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It may take months to find the cause of the fire in Børsen

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The fire in Børsen in Copenhagen is under control, but was not yet extinguished on Wednesday, according to the fire service in the city. Photo: Ida Marie Odgaard / AP / NTB

Of NTB | 17.04.2024 15:23:24

Accidents and natural disasters: The police have launched an extensive investigation to find the cause of the fire. Rune Nielsen of the Copenhagen Police tells Danish TV 2 that the first thing to do is to try to find out where the fire started.

Police inspector Brian Belling says that, among other things, questioning has been carried out of workers who were present, and surveillance cameras from the area have been secured.

Extinguishing work in the historic building from the 17th century was still ongoing on Wednesday. The fire crews expect to continue working for another day.

– We have shifted our time assessment. Yesterday we thought we would be here until today. We now expect that we will be here until tomorrow morning, at least, says task leader Tim Ole Simonsen in the fire and rescue agency Hovedstadens Beredskab to Danish TV 2 on Wednesday morning.

Among other things, there are pockets of smoldering fire in the burned-out half of the building, and the fire crews are also monitoring the part of the building that has not burned, to prevent the fire from spreading.

– To ensure traffic, we must ensure that the stock exchange building does not collapse onto the street, says Simonsen. The aim is also to preserve what remains of the historic brickwork, which can possibly be used in connection with the reconstruction.

The fire in Børsen started at 7.30 on Tuesday morning. Shortly after 8 o’clock the building’s famous dragon spire was engulfed in flames, and half an hour later it collapsed.

Brian Mikkelsen, director of Dansk Erhverv, which owns the building, tells of a small bright spot when he was handed the top of the spire.

– A small point of light in the darkness. This morning, one of the wonderful boys from the emergency department handed me the top of the iconic dragon sprout that had survived the flames and the high fall, writes Mikkelsen on X/Twitter.

He calls the over 400-year-old building a national treasure and admits that it will not be quite the same again after a reconstruction.

– It will be like the old stock exchange. But it won’t be the old stock exchange, he says.

– We were in the process of restoring it so that it could shine until September, when it has been here for 400 years. Instead, it is burned down. It cannot be endured, he says.

Kent Martiniussen of the Danish Architecture Center says that there is nothing to prevent Børsen being rebuilt, including the spire, but it will take many years and cost many hundreds of millions, perhaps more.

The firefighters are also working to ensure that the building’s outer walls do not collapse. This happens, among other things, by setting up around 40 containers to stiffen the facade.

Mikkelsen already made it clear on Tuesday that Børsen, which was in the process of being renovated, will be rebuilt, whatever the cost.

(© NTB)

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