Fire in Notre-Dame-de-Paris: The Ravaged Roof, The Spire Collapses

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The spire of Notre-Dame collapses during the fire of the frame of the cathedral, in Paris on April 15, 2019.

A fire broke out in Notre-Dame-de-Paris Cathedral on Monday 15th April, 2019 around 6.50pm. Work in the building could be the cause.

very serious fire broke out at Notre-Dame-de-Paris Cathedral on Monday 15th April, 2019, around 6:50 pm, several media reports . The fire could “potentially be linked” to the renovation of the building, but its origin is still unknown.

The spire of the building, culminating at 93 meters high, collapsed on itself shortly before 8pm. More than two hours after the beginning of the disaster, at 9 pm, the flames still ravaged the cathedral and completely destroyed the roof .

An unquenchable fire

The fire, which spreads extremely fast, took in the attic of the cathedral , said firefighters. It seems to be part of scaffolding installed on the roof of the building, built between the twelfth and fourteenth century, according to firefighters.

“Everything is burning. The frame, which dates from the nineteenth century on one side and the thirteenth on the other, there will be nothing left, “told AFP Andre Finot, the spokesman for Notre Dame.

“We have to see if the vault, which protects the cathedral, will be touched or not,” he added, “the sacred objects are preserved in the sacristy, normally there is no risk that things are burned “.

According to the Ministry of the Interior at 9pm, there would be no victim to deplore.

Notre-Dame de Paris on fire, April 15, 2019.
Notre-Dame de Paris on fire, April 15, 2019. (©© AFP / FRANCOIS GUILLOT)

Emmanuel Macron goes on the spot

Faced with the seriousness of this event, Emmanuel Macron announced that he postponed his televised speech on Monday night and that he went to the scene of the tragedy.

The mayor of Paris Anne Hidalgo deplores a “terrible fire” on Twitter. She quickly went there.

Emotion around the world

Donald Trump was one of the first to govern the disaster. “So horrible to watch the mighty fire in Notre-Dame-de-Paris,” writes the US president on Twitter.

London Mayor Sadiq Khan talks about “heart-breaking” scenes.

Angela Merkel spoke of “a symbol of France and our European culture”. The images are looped on television channels around the world.

The shocked crowd

According to a journalist on site, a large security perimeter was set up all around the neighbourhood. It bears witness to the situation:

“The banks of the Seine and the streets are black of people. There are people crying, taking pictures, some praying.  People are aghast, forbidden by what they see. The silence especially, is terrifying.”

Part of the island of the city was evacuated, including emergencies of the hotel-Dieu, adjacent to the cathedral, said a doctor on site.

This fire occurs on the first day of Holy Week celebrations leading to Easter, the main Christian holiday.

About 13 million tourists visit the building each year.

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