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Paris officials moved Tuesday to downplay the risk of lead poisoning from the massive fire that tore through Notre-Dame cathedral in April, as tests continue to show worrying levels of the toxic metal at nearby schools.
"All the tests we've carried out in a radius of 500 metres (1,640 feet) around Notre-Dame are negative, meaning there is no danger," deputy mayor Emmanuel Gregoire told LCI television.
Hundreds - Tonnes - Lead - Roof - Steeple
Hundreds of tonnes of lead in the roof and steeple melted during the April 15 blaze, which nearly destroyed the gothic masterpiece, releasing lead particles that later settled on surrounding streets and buildings.
Work at the gutted monument was halted on July 25 after officials found that anti-contamination measures were insufficient to keep the lead from spreading, and is only expected to resume next week.
Monday - Evening - City - Results - Round
On Monday evening, the city posted the results of a new round of testing at the schools and daycares in the immediate area, showing less than 70 microgrammes per square meter, the level generally considered safe.
But it also revealed that some schools and daycare centres beyond the 500-metre perimeter still showed isolated readings on playgrounds or windowsills of more than 1,000 microgrammes.
Gregoire - Sites - School - Year - Resumes
Gregoire vowed the sites would be "rigorously cleaned" before the school year resumes in September, and would welcome children only if approved...
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