Then, slowly, the building's iconic spire toppled and collapsed.
The central lead-clad wooden spire, which rose 93 metres (300 feet) above the cathedral roof and weighed 250 tonnes, was in need of costly restoration because the lead, meant to protect the spire from the elements, was wearing thin.
It now needs to be rebuilt completely after collapsing during the fire.
— Notre-Dame Cathedral (@CathedraleNotre) April 15, 2019
— Patrick Galey (@patrickgaley) April 15, 2019
WATCH: Crowds surround Notre-Dame Cathedral as spire collapses pic.twitter.com/n2473XfO44
— Reuters Top News (@Reuters) April 15, 2019
— NBC News (@NBCNews) April 15, 2019