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Friday, February 23, 2024

Singapore safely detonates 100kg WWII bomb post-evacuation

Singaporean army specialists safely detonated a 100-kilogram (220-pound) World War II-era bomb found at a construction site, resulting in a thunderous explosion that followed the evacuation of thousands of residents.

This controlled detonation, reported to be the largest-ever involving a WWII relic in Singapore, led to the evacuation of over 4,000 individuals residing nearby.

The unexploded aerial bomb was discovered at a condominium construction site in the northeastern suburb of Bukit Timah the previous week. A series of explosions occurred as bomb disposal experts conducted the operation, with a mushroom cloud rising in the distance.

Military personnel set up sandbags around the detonation area to contain the blast before the detonation, and soldiers transported the bomb to the sandbagged area using a net. The surrounding streets were cleared of vehicles, and a 200-meter cordon was established to ensure public safety during the detonation.

Despite the loud explosion, police had alerted residents not to be alarmed and to avoid the area. The bomb was estimated to contain approximately 47 kilograms of explosives, sufficient to destroy an apartment block.

Singapore, which was then a British colony, experienced its first bombings by Japanese planes on December 8, 1941, following Japan’s attack on the US Pacific fleet in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. These bombings intensified in January 1942, leading to the eventual capture of the island by Japanese troops on February 8, 1942.

In recent years, Singapore has witnessed a few discoveries of unexploded WWII devices, including one found in April 2021 and another in December 2020, both at construction sites.

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