Evacuation on Christmas morning due to 1.8-ton air bomb

Largest evacuation in post-war Germany was caused by a 24-hour process of defusing a WW2 air bomb weighting 1.8 tons in city centre of Augsburg, Bavaria, Germany. The bomb was discovered on December 20th.

The 1.8 ton air bomb (by EPA via TVN24)

The bomb was discovered at a construction site in the city centre, what caused the officials to evacuate over 54000 people on Saturday morning, on Christmas Eve. The residents of the city were allowed to return home on Sunday morning. During the process nearly whole town was said to have been paralysed as the military set up a 1.5 km radius safety perimeter. Augsburg was one of the largest industry centres of the Third Reich and thus a target of numerous air raids by the Allies.

The site of the bomb prior to defusing (by Stadt Augsburg)

The evacuation involved over 32000 households, including retirement homes, patients, and homeless. Over 900 Police officers were involved, securing the safety perimeter. The date, chosen by the officials, of the evacuation was criticised by the inhabitants, as it was deliberately  picked for Christmas Eve and first day of Christmas. The officials of Augsburg’s City Hall stated that it was chosen due to expected low traffic on the holiday and expected problems if the operation would have been conducted on a regular day. The bomb was defused, transported and detonated at a secure area.

(after TVN24, EPA & Stadt Augsburg)

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