Versailles palace briefly evacuated due to smoke from roof works

The Palace of Versailles was briefly evacuated on Tuesday afternoon after plumes of smoke were spotted amid renovation work on the roof near the Marble Court, an area of the original château built in 1623 by French King Louis XIII.

The palace press office told The Associated Press there was no fire, but smoke was emanating from a “hot zone” in the wood in the roofing. The office said local firefighters quickly put out the smoke.

The palace office said there were no injuries or damage to the building or the heritage collections. Investigations were underway.

The palace is a major tourist attraction, with 8 million annual visitors.

The smoke was spotted around 3:15 p.m. and tourists were quickly evacuated in line with protocol. Visitors were allowed back in by 4:30 p.m.

In 2019, Notre Dame cathedral in central Paris was devastated by a fire that swept across the roof and caused the spire to collapse. The restoration of the cathedral is due to be completed at the end of 2024.


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