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London city airport shuts down after WWII bomb found

News Agencies | Updated on: 12 February 2018, 13:34 IST

The London City airport was shut down by the authorities on Sunday evening after a bomb, dating to the era of the Second World War, was found by the construction authorities near the Thames River.

The construction workers then immediately reported the matter to the authorities. The London Metropolitan Police and the Royal Navy were called in after the bomb was discovered. Other authorities were called in later and confirmed the nature of the bomb after investigation, the CNN reported.

In a series of tweets by the London City airport, it wrote, "STATEMENT from Robert Sinclair, CEO of London City Airport: "The airport remains closed this morning following the discovery of a World War Two ordnance in King George V Dock on Sunday. (1/3)"

"All flights in and out of London City on Monday are cancelled and an exclusion zone is in place in the immediate area. I urge any passengers due to fly today not to come to the airport and to contact their airline for further information. (2/3)"

"I recognise this is causing inconvenience for our passengers, and in particular some of our local residents. The airport is cooperating fully with the Met Police and Royal Navy and working hard to safely remove the device and resolve the situation as quickly as possible." (3/3)"

According to the Metropolitan Police, the operations on removing the bomb are ongoing. It said that the discovery of the bomb was reported early on Sunday, at around 5 am (local time), and the exclusion zone was put in place at 10 am (local time).

"The Royal Navy has implemented the 214-meter exclusion zone to ensure that the ordnance can be safely dealt with whilst limiting any risk to the public," the police said in a statement.

The London City Airport is a small two-storey international airport located in the Newham Borough of East London. The area was heavily industrialised and highly populated during the Second World War.

The Royal Docks, where the runways are now located, was the main entry point for goods on the Thames River.

The airport is one of the six airports that serve the city- Heathrow, Gatwick, Luton, Southend and Stansted. It is the fifth busiest airport in London and 13th busiest in the UK.

The airport is much smaller than the Heathrow Airport and caters mostly to business travelers heading to destinations in the United Kingdom, Europe and the United States.

In July 2016, a 400 million pound expansion was approved by the UK Government, which also includes the extension of the runway and the terminal.

With the expansion scheduled to be completed by 2025, two more million passengers are expected to use the airport, along with 30,000 additional flights annually.

Last year, more than 4.5 million passengers had used the London City Airport.


First published: 12 February 2018, 13:34 IST