Massive fire breaks out in Notre Dame cathedral in Paris

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By Lucia Suarez Sang-Fox News

A massive fire engulfed the roof at the famed Notre Dame cathedral in Paris on Monday afternoon, collapsing the main spire in the blaze.

The intense flames leaped out from two of its bell towers minutes before the spire collapsed. A church spokesman told French media that all of Notre Dame cathedral’s frame is burning after the spire collapsed.

Notre Dame spokesman Andre Finot told French media: “Everything is burning, nothing will remain from the frame.”

Dramatic video showed black smoke billowing out from the top of the cathedral as firefighters furiously worked to contain the flames.

The sight stopped pedestrians in their tracks along the Seine River, which passes under the cathedral.

A woman who only identifies herself as “Sun” online tweeted a 15-second clip of the blaze, claiming she was around the scene when the fire first started.

“Omg it keeps getting bigger and bigger so fast, i’m leaving now but in case it catches up to the crowd um hi at least my last moments were in paris,” she wrote in a Twitter thread.

Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo called it a “terrible fire,” while President Emmanuel Macron said it was “sad to see this part of us burn.”

“Notre-Dame of Paris is in flames. Emotion in the whole nation. Thoughts for all Catholics and for all French,” he tweeted. “Like all our countrymen, I’m sad to see this part of us burn.”

The deputy mayor of Paris, Emmanuel Gregoire, told BFMTV that the cathedral has suffered “colossal damages.”

Paris emergency services said they were trying to salvage the artwork stored in the cathedral.

 

The French capital’s police department said no deaths have been reported from Monday’s fire. The police department didn’t say anything about injuries.

Hidalgo said Paris authorities are in touch with Paris diocese.

The fire department was fighting the flames, while the area near the cathedral was being cleared.

It was not immediately clear what caused the fire. Notre Dame was undergoing a $6.8 million renovation project, with some sections under scaffolding, while bronze statues were removed last week for works

Sources told Fox News that it appears the fire was related to recent construction done at the cathedral.

Macron canceled a planned televised speech to the nation in light of the “terrible fire” underway at the cathedral, an official at the president’s Elysee office said.

Additional information was not immediately available.

President Donald Trump tweeted about the fire, saying it was “horrible to watch the massive fire at Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris.”

Located on the Ile de la Cite in the center of Paris, the Gothic cathedral – which dates back to the 12th century – attracts millions of tourists each year. The cathedral is home to incalculable works of art and is one of the world’s most famous tourist attractions.

It was featured in Victor Hugo’s novel “The Hunchback of Notre-Dame.”

Lucia I. Suarez Sang is a Reporter & Editor for FoxNews.com. Follow her on Twitter @luciasuarezsang

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