Construction workers discovered the bomb, which Newham Council officials say was a 500kg German munition, at the George V Dock on Sunday while conducting pre-planned work at the east London airport, police said.
In response to the discovery, Metropolitan Police Service and Royal Navy officials have put a 214-meter exclusion zone in place as they work to secure the area and safely remove the device, leading to a number of evacuations and road closures.
London City Airport will be closed for the day, with passengers urged to check in with their airlines for more details.
“I urge any passengers due to fly today not to come to the airport and to contact their airline for further information,” the airport’s CEO, Robert Sinclair, said in a statement posted on the airport’s website.
Affected airlines include British Airways, Lufthansa, Luxair, Flybe, KLM, CityJet, and Alitalia. Some, like CityJet and Alitalia, are switching to alternative airports like the London Stansted Airport and London Southend Airport, while others are canceling flights for the day altogether.
This morning @LondonCityAir will be closed due to the discovery of a World War Two ordnance close to airfield. AZ212/AZ211/AZ216/AZ215 flights will depart from @STN_Airport. Please check your flight status before going to the airport. https://t.co/i2MPme3GfDpic.twitter.com/1CTlBkSTVd
— Alitalia (@Alitalia) February 12, 2018
The bomb’s removal is expected to continue through Tuesday morning, according to Newham Council officials, with the original exclusion zone extending to 350 meters once officials begin the procedure.
Affected streets include Holt Road, Leonard Street, Lord Street, Newland Street, Tate Road, Muir Street, and Kennard Street, according to the BBC, while the Docklands Light Railway, which transports passengers to and from the airport and the Woolwich Arsenal station, is also closed for the day.