Fire at Notre Dame cathedral

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Fire at Notre Dame cathedral

Yasmin Vizguerra, Reporter

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The Notre Dame Cathedral, an iconic tourist landmark in France was engulfed in flames April 15 as a massive fire tore through the historic building.

     The spire of the building collapsed as firefighters raced to save the rest of the structure.

     Paris’ fire department declared Tuesday morning that nearly 400 firefighters took part in the 9-hour effort to stop the fire.

     Two police officers and a firefighter suffered minor injuries while combating the flames.

     The fire spread to one of the cathedral’s towers as officials were hopeful they could save both.

     “The fire was gigantic and it was so sad seeing that happen because it’s a really old building and to see it burn felt sad,” said  Jada Garza (‘20).

     Emmanuel Macron, the French President, vowed to rebuild the cathedral and said he will seek international help to do so.

     Officials said there were no deaths in the fire, chief of the Parisian fire brigade, Jean-Claude Gallet, said two-thirds of the roofing was destroyed as the result of the fire.

     The fire broke out just before 7 p.m., minutes after the cathedral, which more than 30,000 people visit daily, closed to the public.

      Around 8:30 p.m., footage showed the fire to have been getting under control.

      The cathedral had been undergoing extensive renovations at the time of the fire.

      Church spokesperson Andre Finot said the entire wooden interior, which dates back to the 13th century, had burned and was likely to be destroyed.

      “I remember watching it over the news and how big the fire had gotten, especially since it is all wood,” said Briana Regan (‘21).

       Emergency services said they were trying to salvage as much artwork as possible, nearly all of it was able to be recovered and saved.

      The Crown of Thorns, which is said to be worn by Jesus Christ before the crucifixion and the tunic of St. Louis were both saved, according to the cathedral’s rector.

     French media said that the Paris prosecutor has begun an investigation on the cause of the fire, but the prosecutor’s office believes the fire was accidental and don’t suspect arson.

     The fire was fully extinguished by the following morning.

     A Paris church dedicated its service to the fire on Easter.

     So far, donations have been collected to restore the cathedral.

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