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Last Updated: Tuesday, 6 June 2006, 21:03 GMT 22:03 UK
New city evacuation plan unveiled
Police divert traffic from Birmingham city centre,
20,000 people were evacuated from the city centre last year
A new plan for the evacuation of Birmingham city centre in the event of a terrorist attack or other major emergency is being launched.

Last July up to 20,000 people had to leave the city's entertainment district after police were warned lives were at risk. It proved to be a false alarm.

Police and the city council have drawn up an evacuation map of 32 zones.

It allows all or part of central Birmingham to be alerted and evacuated in a co-ordinated way.

The plan would also come into force in the event of an incident such as fire or extreme weather conditions.

In last year's alert, hundreds of people left stranded by the evacuation stayed at makeshift accommodation at Aston University overnight.

Police said they had responded to "a very specific threat".

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