Notre-Dame de Paris fire: the old scaffolding finally dismantled

The dismantling of the old scaffolding which surrounded the spire of Notre-Dame de Paris before the fire of April 15, 2019 and which hampered the security of the damaged building was completed on Tuesday, November 24, announced the public establishment in charge. of the cathedral building site.

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The dismantling of the damaged scaffolding began on June 8 and lasted less than six months. Made up of 40,000 pieces weighing 200 tons, half of which were over 40 meters high, it represented a serious threat to the building, a jewel of Gothic art. The dismantling was completed on Tuesday in the presence of the Minister of Culture, Roselyne Bachelot.

“I would like to thank all the scaffolders, rope access technicians, aerial work platforms and crane operators who worked tirelessly to carry out this operation. The threat that this scaffolding represented for the cathedral has now been lifted. We will be able to get down to the final stages of securing ”, declared General Jean-Louis Georgelin, president of the public establishment.

Parts welded together by the brazier

During the fire of April 15, 2019, the spire of the cathedral was under restoration. The scaffolding was deformed by the heat of the brazier, and the parts welded together. Before removal, sensors were first installed so that the work could proceed in complete safety, then the scaffolding was surrounded by metal beams on three levels to stabilize it and prevent any risk of collapse.

The structure was then framed by a second scaffolding in order to install metal beams, to allow rope access workers to descend to the heart of the burnt out scaffolding. The protocol provided for the scaffolders to dismantle the accessible parts using a basket, while the rope access workers descended as close as possible to the charred parts to cut the tubes, using saber saws. The rooms were evacuated using a large 80-meter crane.

No basket could be lifted in too strong a wind

In mid-August, the rope access technicians’ mission ended and the scaffolders were able to take over to complete the operation. As no nacelle could be lifted when the wind was blowing above 36 km / h, a 2×8 operation was implemented to speed up the last operations carried out in the fall.

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At the end of October, the scaffolding was separated into four stable and independent sets, making it possible to release a large beam suspended above the crossing of the transept, which threatened to fall.


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