Paris, France, Jun 27, 2019 / 09:28 am
An initial investigation into the devastating fire that consumed much of Notre-Dame cathedral in April has found no signs of criminal action behind the blaze, French officials said Wednesday.
Chief Prosecutor of Paris Remy Heitz said in a statement that the investigations so far have not been able to pinpoint a cause of the fire but have found no evidence that it was deliberate, the BBC reported. "Deeper investigations" will be carried out, he said.
Officials conducted 100 witness hearings in the initial stage of their investigation, according to CNN. They will now consider the possibility of negligence - including electrical malfunction or a poorly extinguished cigarette - as a cause for the fire.
Shortly before 7 p.m. on April 15, a fire broke out in the iconic Gothic cathedral in Paris. The roof and the spire, which dated to the 19th century, were destroyed. Shortly after midnight April 16, firefighters announced that the cathedral's main structure had been preserved from collapse.