London City Airport closed after WWII bomb found in nearby dock

AFP-JIJI

London City Airport was closed Monday as military experts worked to remove a World War II bomb found in the neighboring dock.

The unexploded ordnance was discovered in King George V Dock, during planned works near the runway of London’s most central airport.

The bomb was discovered at around 5 a.m. Sunday and a 214-meter exclusion zone was imposed “to ensure that the ordnance can be safely dealt with whilst limiting any risk to the public,” police said.

Homes within the exclusion zone were evacuated overnight and the local authority was providing residents with temporary accommodation and support.

Police remained at the scene Monday.

“The operation to remove the ordnance is ongoing in partnership with our colleagues in the Royal Navy,” London’s Metropolitan Police said in a statement.

City Airport operates short-haul flights and is located in east London, close to the Canary Wharf business district.

It is the capital’s fifth-biggest airport.

“The airport remains closed this morning,” said Robert Sinclair, its chief executive.

“All flights in and out of London City on Monday are cancelled.

“I urge any passengers due to fly today not to come to the airport and to contact their airline for further information.”

London was heavily bombed during the “Blitz,” the Nazi German air attacks carried out between September 1940 and May 1941.

London City Airport opened in 1987 in the disused docks area. It handled 4.5 million passengers in 2017 and is mainly used by business travelers.