Paris, France, Jul 25, 2019 / 13:48 pm
Almost four months after a fire destroyed the roof of Notre-Dame de Paris, officials are concerned that the building is still at risk of collapse. Now instead of a fire threatening the 850-year-old building, it is the record summer temperatures that may further erode the stonework.
France, and most of Europe, is in the midst of a record-setting heatwave. Temperatures reached 108.7 degrees Fahrenheit (42.6 C) in Paris on Thursday, the highest ever recorded.
Philippe Villeneueve, the cathedral's chief architect, is worried the Parisian heat wave combined with the water damage sustained during the firefighting effort could spell disaster for the cathedral's vaults.
"I am very worried about the heat wave because, as you know, the Cathedral suffered from the fire, the beams coming down, but also the shock from the water from the firefighters. The masonry is saturated with water," he told Reuters Aug. 24.