Notre Dame Fire

Alex Skelley and Deepika Joshi

On Monday, April 15, a fire started at the historic Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris, France. The fire started while the Cathedral was under renovation, and most likely originated in the attic. The exact source of the fire has not been confirmed, but the two most likely options are electrical failure, or human error.

Many parts of the building have been destroyed, including the building’s iconic 300 foot spire. The wooden roof is destroyed in many places, and is blacked and burnt in most of the rest. However, it’s also been reported that many priceless treasures and artworks were saved, and many were in good condition.

The fire was made worse by the fact that the fire alarms did not alert dispatchers immediately. The fire was only reported, and firefighters deployed, after a blaze was discovered by a guard. Because of this, there was a delay of about 20 minutes, where the fire continued to grow.

About 500 firefighters fought the blaze for around 5 hours. Architects fear that heavy rainfall could result in further collapse. Architect, Philippe Villeneuve says, “We are working as fast as we can,”and also mentions that the work was expected to be finished by Wednesday. Large, purpose-built “umbrella” on the roof of the landmark is one of the plans which will be protecting the structure while reconstruction occurs. However, the rain is too strong, not giving enough time for the “umbrella” to be finished.