Fire at Notre Dame Cathedral

By Brian Ries, Veronica Rocha, Rob Picheta, Euan McKirdy, Jessie Yeung, Gianluca Mezzofiore and Paul P. Murphy, CNN

Updated 11:23 a.m. ET, April 17, 2019
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2:35 p.m. ET, April 15, 2019

What we know about the fire at Notre Dame cathedral so far

A fire broke out at the iconic Notre Dame cathedral in the heart of Paris on Monday evening.

Here's what we know about the blaze:

  • The spire was destroyed: Large parts of the roof already appear to have been burned, CNN’s Melissa Bell, who is in Paris, reported. The spire collapsed during the fire.
  • Firefighters tackled large flames: At least seven firetrucks were trying to tackle the flames, she said. The smell of smoke was emanating through the air and embers were falling from the sky.
  • Cause unknown: The cause of the fire is still unclear.
  • Police kept people away: Police urged everyone to avoid the area and emergency services pushed people away from the scene.

Click here to read this story in a standard article format.

2:06 p.m. ET, April 15, 2019

NOW: Notre Dame's famous spire has fallen

The spire of the Notre Dame’s cathedral has collapsed, fully engulfed by flames.

Here's the moment that happened, from Twitter user Hash Miser:

1:57 p.m. ET, April 15, 2019

French President Emmanuel Macron postpones planned speech because of fire

From CNN's Saskya Vandoorne

French President Emmanuel Macron postponed a planned speech tonight because of the ongoing fire at Notre Dame cathedral, a Élysée Palace spokesperson said.

In a statement, the spokesperson said, “Due to the terrible fire ravaging Notre-Dame-de-Paris, the President of the Republic has decided to postpone his speech.”

1:51 p.m. ET, April 15, 2019

The entire spire of Notre Dame's historic cathedral appears to be on fire

A video we've just received from Twitter user Hash Miser appears to show Notre Dame cathedral's entire spire in flames.

See it:

3:31 p.m. ET, April 15, 2019

Trump suggests Paris firefighters need "flying water tankers" to fight blaze at Notre Dame

President Trump just tweeted about the fire at the Notre Dame cathedral in Paris and suggested "flying water tankers" could help put it out.

"Must act quickly!" Trump tweeted.

Read his tweet:

See President Trump's comment on the fire:

2:28 p.m. ET, April 15, 2019

Video shows flames and smoke billowing from Notre Dame cathedral

Maria Kadzhaeva shot this video of the fire at Notre Dame cathedral.

It showed flames and a tower of smoke billowing from the upper reaches of the cathedral in Paris.

Click play to see it:

2:27 p.m. ET, April 15, 2019

Video taken from the Seine shows the fire

Boat passengers on the river Seine are sharing videos of smoke billowing from the historic Notre Dame cathedral.

Police are asking people to avoid the area and clear the way for emergency personnel.

See it:

2:27 p.m. ET, April 15, 2019

Firefighters are trying to control "terrible" Notre Dame fire, Paris mayor says

From CNN's Martin Goillandeau in London

The fire department is trying to control a “terrible fire” that’s broke out at Notre Dame cathedral, Mayor Anne Hidalgo said.

Hidalgo tweeted: 

“A terrible fire is underway at Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris. The fire brigade are trying to control the fire. We are mobilized locally in close connection with church authorities. I ask everyone to respect the security perimeter.”
Anne Hidalgo/Twitter
Anne Hidalgo/Twitter

2:38 p.m. ET, April 15, 2019

The cathedral was built in the 13th century and draws 13 million visitors a year

From CNN's Saskya Vandoorne

The medieval cathedral was completed in the 13th century and today, with its towers, spire, flying buttresses and stained glass, is considered a feat of architecture as much as a religious symbol.

It is one of Paris' most popular attractions, drawing an estimated 13 million visitors a year.

Today, it is in flames.