February 25th, 2024

Montreal police say basilica fire not arson, investigation shows cause was electrical

By The Canadian Press on December 24, 2023.

Charred construction equipment is shown at the Notre Dame Basilica in Montreal, Sunday, Dec. 24, 2023, after a fire at the historic site. Police say arson investigators were at the scene this morning and determined the fire's origin was electrical. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Graham Hughes

Montreal police say an early morning fire outside the city’s Notre-Dame Basilica was not intentionally set.

Police spokeswoman Const. Véronique Dubuc says arson investigators were at the scene this morning and determined the fire’s origin was electrical.

Police began an investigation after firefighters found what they believed were traces of accelerant.

Firefighters were called to the historic church in Old Montreal around 2:30 a.m. after a fire began on a construction scaffold being used for renovation work on the building’s exterior.

Police say there was no damage to the building, which is a national historic site.

Christmas masses at the basilica are scheduled to go ahead as planned.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Dec. 24, 2023.

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