German Town Clears Out to Defuse 4K-lb. WWII Bomb
20K leave city of Dortmund when unexploded ordnance found
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Nov 3, 2013 6:40 AM CST
A World War II bomb lies inside a transporter after it was defused in Berlin, in this April 3, 2013, file photo. Allied planes dropped huge quantities of bombs on Germany.   (AP Photo/Markus Schreiber)

(Newser) – More than 20,000 people are being evacuated from their homes in the west German city of Dortmund as authorities prepare to defuse a massive bomb left over from World War II. The 4,000-pound bomb was discovered after experts analyzed old aerial photographs while searching for unexploded ordnance dropped by Allied aircraft over Germany's industrial Ruhr region. City authorities said today they expect the operation to defuse the bomb to be completed by about 3:30pm.

While unexploded WWII-era bombs are regularly discovered in Germany, they are rarely as big as this one. A similar bomb find two years ago prompted the evacuation of some 45,000 people in the city of Koblenz along the Rhine river.