Ordnance rendered safe; Calif. evacuations lifted

This image provided by the Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Office Wednesday April 16, 2014 shows the military ordnance that caused the evacuation of between 500 and 700 homes and businesses Wednesday in Solvang Calif. The tiny town 100 miles northwest of Los Angeles is a tourist stop known for its Danish-themed shops and buildings. (Photo: Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Office, AP)
This image provided by the Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Office Wednesday April 16, 2014 shows the military ordnance that caused the evacuation of between 500 and 700 homes and businesses Wednesday in Solvang Calif. The tiny town 100 miles northwest of Los Angeles is a tourist stop known for its Danish-themed shops and buildings. (Photo: Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Office, AP)

SOLVANG, Calif. (AP) — Evacuees from hundreds of homes and businesses in the Central California town of Solvang were returning early Thursday after experts removed a military ordnance found in the town’s business district and rendered it safe.

The evacuation call was issued Wednesday afternoon for between 500 and 700 residences and work sites after the potentially explosive ordnance was found on Copenhagen Drive near houses, the Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s office said.

Spokeswoman Kelly Hoover said the Sheriff’s Department bomb squad and a bomb disposal team from Vandenberg Air Force Base cleared the ordnance early Thursday morning, shortly after midnight.

Officials released a photo of the ordnance. It didn’t provide any details, but it appeared to be some sort of artillery shell. There was no word on specifically where it was found or how it got there.

Hoover said that during the hourslong evacuation, department members went door to door to notify residents in a 1,500-foot radius of where the ordnance was found. At the same time, the Red Cross set up a shelter.

The tiny town 100 miles northwest of Los Angeles is a tourist stop known for its Danish-themed shops and buildings.

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