Notre Dame Cathedral fire being investigated as accident for now, prosecutors say

Renovations had been underway at the cathedral

Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo says firefighters are trying to contain a "terrible fire" at the city's Notre Cathedral.

France's civil security agency says "all means" except for water-dropping aircraft were deployed to tackle the blaze.

President Donald Trip took to Twitter to say that the colossal fire swept through the famed Notre-Dame Cathedral in central Paris on Monday was terrible.

Police have said the blaze is thought to be linked to the structure's ongoing $6.8 million renovation project.

News quickly spread about the awful fire at the historic cathedral, which is believed to have been caused by renovations, in the early morning hours of April. 15.

Flames and smoke rise from Notre Dame cathedral as it burns in Paris, Monday, April 15, 2019. It is loved by Parisians, by French people, indeed people all around the world.

"From our hotel room we watched the big tall spire go straight down into the nave of the church", Debbie Furr said. That is beyond countries, that's beyond anything.

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Construction on Notre Dame Cathedral commenced in 1160, though it has been under construction, expansion, and various degrees of restoration ever since.

Images and video showed flames and thick plumes of smoke billowing up and around the spire, which is surrounded by scaffolding.

The statement says the Vatican is praying for firefighters "and those who are doing everything possible to confront this dramatic situation" on Monday.

In the streets, people are "super silent", said Franck Pierron, a former Montrealer who lives in Paris.

Earlier today, the commander had warned that "we are not sure if we will be able to stop the spreading of the flames to the North Tower", sparking fears the cathedral's structure may be a loss. "Let us stay more united than ever, in hope".

Notre Dame was constructed in 1163 during the reign of King Louis VII and was completed in 1345.

"It's been 800 years that the Cathedral watches over Paris", Pascal said. Henry VI of England was crowned inside the cathedral in 1431 and Napoleon Bonaparte was crowned Emperor of France inside the cathedral in 1804.

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