A fire broke out at the Cathedral of Notre-Dame in Paris this Monday evening, destroying its spire and causing severe damage to its roof.
What All We Know About The Fire Breakout
1. The fire occurred at 6:30 p.m., and the Paris fire chief, Jean-Claude Gallet, said it started in the attic. More than nine hours later, the authorities said the fire was “under control,” but a hole in the timber roof left by the cathedral’s fallen spire didn’t stop burning. The cathedral’s rector, Msgr. Patrick Chauvet, said the fire appeared to have started in an interior network of wooden beams, many dating back to the Middle Ages and nicknamed “the forest.”
2. No casualties were found, officials said, but a firefighter was badly injured.
3. The doors of the cathedral were closed just before a last rush of tourists tried to get inside, witnesses said, and not long afterward smoke could be seen ascending from the spire.
4. Around 500 firefighters were deployed to Île de la Cité, the island in the heart of the city where Notre-Dame is located, and they conquered to stop the fire for nearly five hours.
What We Don’t Know About The Fire Breakout
1. The reason behind the fire still remains unknown.
2. The condition of many works, in the interior of the cathedral and part of its structure, remains unknown. The flames threatened to burn down the cathedral’s three huge “rose” stained-glass windows, for instance, and could have caused huge destruction to the church’s three organs and dozens of paintings and sculptures, some dating back to the 17th century.
3. Many parts of the structure were already broken and in need of restoration: Broken gargoyles and fallen balustrades had been replaced by plastic pipes and wooden planks. Those particular spots may have been particularly vulnerable to the flames and falling debris.
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