Page last updated at 13:42 GMT, Wednesday, 10 March 2010

German mine to be blown up in Weymouth bay

Mine found in Portland Harbour
The parachute mine will be disposed of outside the harbour

A German World War II mine found in Portland Harbour in Dorset is set to be blown up on Thursday in Weymouth bay.

Coastguards said a survey vessel with sonar equipment located the "huge" device on the seabed in the middle of the harbour on Tuesday afternoon.

The one-tonne parachute mine was set to be moved and disposed of on Wednesday but windy weather delayed the operation, coastguards said.

Bomb disposal experts will be carrying out the controlled explosion.

Safe area found

The crew were carrying out a routine shoreline survey when they found the mine and lifted it from the bottom.

When they realised the danger it posed, they carefully replaced it on the seabed, a coastguard spokesman said.

A safe area of deeper water, south east of the harbour, has been identified and the mine will be towed there when weather conditions have improved, he said.

Portland Coastguard said it would broadcast warnings to shipping to steer clear of the area before the removal of the mine and police would maintain an exclusion zone.

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German mine discovered in harbour
09 Mar 10 |  Dorset

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