Tag: Fires and Firefighters

Notre-Dame Fire Investigators Focus on Short-Circuit and Cigarettes

PARIS — Investigators are converging around two theories of what caused last week’s devastating fire at Notre-Dame cathedral: a short-circuit near its spire, possibly caused by electrified bells, or negligence by workers carrying out renovations, a theory fueled by the discovery of cigarette butts. On Thursday, for the first time, police investigators were allowed to […]

Read More

Notre-Dame, Ravaged by Fire, Faces a New Threat: Rain

PARIS — With rain expected in Paris later this week, workers at Notre-Dame cathedral on Tuesday scrambled to protect the building’s interior, scaling the walls with ropes to put in place giant tarpaulin coverings, the cathedral’s chief architect said. A catastrophic fire last week destroyed the cathedral’s attic and the lead roof, creating gaping holes […]

Read More

The Mayor of Parma, Missouri, Left Office. Then Her House and City Hall Caught Fire.

A mystery is gripping Parma, Mo., a tiny agricultural city of about 700 people in the southeast corner of the state, with a convenience store, a restaurant and some farm-related businesses at its center. Within a span of a few hours last week, a strange series of events thrust the rural city into the spotlight: […]

Read More

A Guide to Our Notre-Dame Fire Coverage

The fire that ravaged Notre-Dame cathedral in Paris on Monday left a scarred skyline that one of the French capital’s most iconic structures has graced for centuries. Gone is the cathedral’s soaring, delicate 300-foot spire, which collapsed in the flames. The cathedral’s wooden roof is now blackened and charred. In the aftermath of the fire, […]

Read More

Notre-Dame’s Safety Planners Underestimated the Risk, With Devastating Results

PARIS — The architect who oversaw the design of the fire safety system at Notre-Dame acknowledged that officials had misjudged how quickly a flame would ignite and spread through the cathedral, resulting in a much more devastating blaze than they had anticipated. The system was based on the assumption that the ancient oak timbers in […]

Read More

The Miracle of Notre-Dame

PARIS — For Georges Duby, a historian of the Middle Ages, one of the defining features of a historic event, or “évènement,” is that it triggers waves of commentary that bring out what had been kept unspoken. The fire that broke out at Notre-Dame this week is a historic event of our times. Monday night, […]

Read More

The Chaplain, the Cathedral Fire and the Race to Rescue Notre-Dame’s Relics

PARIS — By the time the Paris Fire Department’s chaplain made his way inside of Notre-Dame, flames had already consumed most of the cathedral’s roof and its spire had smashed onto the nave. But the flames had yet to reach many of the artworks, artifacts and relics, and it was the Rev. Jean-Marc Fournier’s job […]

Read More

Millions in Notre-Dame Donations Pour In as France Focuses on Rebuilding

PARIS — Days after a fire tore through Notre-Dame cathedral in Paris, France on Wednesday started to focus on reconstruction, with President Emmanuel Macron having set the ambitious goal of rebuilding the Gothic landmark within five years and donations pouring in from around the world. Prime Minister Édouard Philippe said after a special cabinet meeting […]

Read More

France Focuses on Rebuilding Notre-Dame, as Donations Pour In

PARIS — Days after a destructive fire tore through the Notre-Dame cathedral in Paris, France started on Wednesday to focus on reconstruction, with President Emmanuel Macron having set the ambitious goal of rebuilding the Gothic landmark within five years and donations pouring in from around the world. Édouard Philippe, the French prime minister, said after […]

Read More

Notre-Dame, Royal Family, Nissan: Your Wednesday Briefing

(Want to get this briefing by email? Here’s the sign-up.) Good morning, We start today with the future of the Cathedral of Notre-Dame, jilted British tabloids and a humanitarian relief campaign in Venezuela. ImageA view of the damaged roof of Notre-Dame on Tuesday, in the aftermath of the devastating fire.CreditPool photo by Christophe Petit Tesson […]

Read More

YouTube Fact-Checks the Fire at Notre-Dame With Facts About … 9/11

It was designed to fight misinformation, but a relatively new fact-checking feature on YouTube sputtered on Monday as it displayed information about the Sept. 11 attacks alongside live streams of the fire that ravaged Notre-Dame cathedral. The mistake, attributed to a misguided algorithm, underscored the difficulties the sprawling video platform faces as it responds to […]

Read More

Notre-Dame Flames Spread Like Wildfire. Here’s Why.

PARIS — Inside the cavernous cathedral of Notre-Dame in Paris, the last Mass of the day was underway on Monday of Holy Week when the first fire alarm went off. It was 6:20 p.m., 25 minutes before the heavy wooden doors were scheduled to close to visitors for the day. Worshipers, sightseers and staff were […]

Read More

What the Notre-Dame Fire Reveals About the Soul of France

PARIS — France, a fundamentally Roman Catholic country whose citizens rarely attend Mass, understands the story and the meaning of Easter. It is a story of resurrection and rebirth, of the transformation of something profane into something sacred. In a subdued Paris on Tuesday, as Parisians and tourists gathered to stare at the smoke-smudged stones […]

Read More

Notre-Dame’s Bells Will Toll Again

One of the joys of living in Paris has been to hear the tolling of the great bells of Notre-Dame on Easter Sunday, their festive peals echoing through elegant streets festooned with the blooms of spring. The bells survived what is likely to become known as the Great Fire of 2019, thank Heaven. But they […]

Read More

A Miracle of Timing: The Statues That Escaped the Notre-Dame Fire

PARIS — For years, restoration experts worried that the fragile copper figures risked plunging to earth from Notre-Dame cathedral’s 19th-century spire. Instead, in a miracle of timing, the sculptures of the Twelve Apostles and four New Testament evangelists escaped a fiery end when they were plucked by cranes and removed just days before the blaze […]

Read More

Fate of Priceless Cultural Treasures Uncertain After Notre-Dame Fire

The fire that destroyed two-thirds of the roof of the Cathedral of Notre-Dame in Paris on Monday did more than damage a beloved historic landmark: It also endangered the vast collection of Christian relics and artworks housed in the building and on its grounds. The relics are safe, the French government announced. “Notre Dame’s treasury, […]

Read More

Notre-Dame Will Be Rebuilt, Macron Says, as Fire Investigation Begins

PARIS — President Emmanuel Macron of France has vowed that Notre-Dame cathedral will be rebuilt, as prosecutors begin investigating what caused a fire that badly damaged the 850-year-old symbol of Paris and caused its thin spire to collapse in smoke and flames. Mr. Macron said an international effort to raise funds for reconstruction would begin […]

Read More

From the Ashes of Notre-Dame

A first draft of this column was written before flames engulfed the Cathedral of Notre-Dame de Paris, before its spire fell in one of the most dreadful live images since Sept. 11, 2001, before a blazing fire went further than any of France’s anticlerical revolutionaries ever dared. My original subject was the latest controversy in […]

Read More

Critic’s Notebook: A Symbol of Stone, Faith and Frenchness Goes Up in Smoke

Notre-Dame has occupied the heart of Paris for the better part of a millennium, its twin medieval towers rising from the small central island wedged between the storied left and right banks. Now, France is burning. The fire at Notre-Dame happened on the day that the country’s troubled president, Emmanuel Macron, was supposed to explain […]

Read More