Thousands of residents in Frankfurt were free to return to their homes on Sunday after authorities reported that an unexploded Second World War bomb found close to the European Central Bank headquarters has been defused.
“We did it! The World War II bomb in the Ostend neighbourhood has been defused by the ordnance disposal team. Roadblocks and evacuation zones have been lifted,” the city fire service tweeted.
As well as the massive glass-shelled ECB skyscraper, residential areas home to some 16,000 people within a roughly 1 km radius of the 500 kg bomb were evacuated.
Police combed the area early in the morning for stay-behinds, after loudspeaker trucks circulated urging the inhabitants to leave.
“It’s actually nice to meet the people of the area, because when you live in apartments you don’t always know everybody,” evacuee Carmel McKiernan said at a welcome centre set up in the Frankfurt zoo.
The US fragmentation bomb with two detonators was found on June 25 during construction work in the German city.