Moscow panic following discovery of World War II weapons cache

Two large residential buildings were evacuated and all traffic halted in Moscow's northwestern district after a large cache of World War II shells was discovered by repair workers.

The discovery came at 14:00 local time as workers were installing a new heating pipe.

According to Russia's Emergencies Ministry, a total of 916 76-millimeter shells, 40 of which had detonators installed, were found on the site.

Around 200 residents, who were evacuated into a local school, have returned to their homes after the excavation ended.

They say such dangerous findings are pretty familiar to them, as a huge firing ground was situated in the area during World War II.

The de-miners have now stowed the shells into trucks which will take them to a shooting range outside Moscow where they will be detonated.

A representative of the Moscow military commandant's office earlier told RIA-Novosti news agency that around 200–300 pieces of unexploded ordnance are being uncovered in Moscow every year.