Germany’s biggest evacuation since the second world war has begun in Frankfurt where the discovery of an unexploded 1.4 ton British bomb has put some 60,000 people at risk.
Hospital evacuations were the first to take place on Saturday.
Attempts to defuse the bomb will be made once the evacuation is complete on Sunday morning, and a wide perimeter has been set up.
“Tomorrow will be even more important because the mass of people will be evacuated and we can only start defusing the bomb when the complete radius of 1.5 kilometres is evacuated so it will be exciting and we will
need the help of the people,” said City Councillor Markus Frank.
Police headquarters, two hospitals, transport systems and Germany’s central bank storing $70 billion in gold reserves are all within the danger zone.
Police are authorised to use force to ensure everyone leaves.
To the north-west, in Koblenz, 21,000 people have been evacuated while a 500 kilo American bomb is being defused.
A million and a half tons of explosives were dropped on Germany in WWII, with an estimated 15% failing to explode. More than 2000 tons of unexploded munitions are found every year.