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Last Updated: Thursday, 27 May, 2004, 09:06 GMT 10:06 UK
Paris airport roof collapse: Your reaction
Charles de Galle airport in Paris
Fresh cracking sounds were reported at Paris' Charles de Gaulle-Roissy airport on Monday, a day after a roof collapse in a new terminal killed four people.

Workers were moved to safety after the noises were heard in the glass roof.

The evacuation came as technical investigators prepared to start their probe into how the tragedy happened.

It is now known that four people died when a section of roofing crashed onto a boarding passageway, causing several tonnes of glass and concrete to fall.

Have you been affected by events at Charles de Gaulle airport?

This debate is now closed. Read a selection of your comments below.


Your reaction

I heard a loud and growing rumbling sound
J. Hines, Piscataway, NJ
On May 23, I was in the airport at time of accident, just outside 2E waiting to go about to go through customs for a flight home, when I heard a loud and growing rumbling sound. Thinking it was a low flying plan or earthquake I eased back from the sound, until I hear people screaming, glass breaking, and alarms go off as shops opened at 6:30 am suddenly automatically closed their gates. Next people where slowly moving back from sound to 2F and guards were telling people to leave building or go further towards 2F. It is only because I was speaking with a young people travelling the world alone about her adventures that I was slow in going towards my gate quicker. I did not learn the full extent of accident until landing in US and going through US customs. I am truly sadden by lose of life.
J. Hines, Piscataway, NJ

Not surprising! Charles De Gaulle is a horribly outdated, and poorly run airport. It is uncomfortable, smoky and generally unpleasant: I avoid it like the plague. I'm surprised more of it isn't falling apart.
Vincent Nocito, New York, USA

The building is intact but empty, dark and silent
Carlo Berruti, Milan / Paris
I have been fascinated by CDG's terminal 2E since when it was opened; every single time I flew from there I couldn't help staring at the sleek and elegant patterns of its design. It was not only beautiful, it was also a very functional airport terminal, providing smooth interchange with terminal 2F and the rest of terminal 2. Yesterday I went to see it from outside: what strikes the most is the surgeon-like cut that interrupts the continuity of the roof - like a pipe's section cut off with a saw. The atmosphere is surreal, the rest of the building being intact but empty, dark and silent. It reflects the sense of grief and astonishment about a collapse that may change the architectural philosophy of terminal buildings, at least in France, for a long while.
Carlo Berruti, Milan (Italy) / Paris (France)

Public buildings should fit sensors to monitor exactly this. A small sensor would cost virtually nothing and could have saved lives.
Martin, London, UK

I was in 2E on Wednesday May 19 and commented upon how beautiful the building was. Boy, am I glad that I left Wednesday instead of Sunday, my original departure date!
B Condos, San Antonio, TX, USA

I'm scheduled to fly to CDG on Thursday! I have enough paranoia just living in NY and booked a trip to Paris for a brief escape. I'll take the flight because you cannot live in fear. Still, this is most unfortunate.
Kafi Hazelwood, New York, USA

The problem is the acoustic resonance. The layout of terminal buildings, material used and docking spots for the planes (between the buildings) all together contributed to the collapse.
Drgrig, Boston, USA

Flying is scary enough. Now we have to worry about the airport falling down!!
Gordon, USA

The architect didn't consider the laws of physics to be a constraint on his vision
name here
It seems to me that the root cause of this tragedy lies in pushing the artistic envelope without doing the required structural analysis and testing. That and apparently the architect didn't consider the laws of physics to be a constraint on his vision. This tragedy is what happens when artistry is valued over sound engineering and construction practices in public works.
Jeff, Alabama, USA

I visited Terminal 2E in March and I must admit that I was very impressed with the appearance of the building. Charles de Gaulle is a highly inspirational airport from an architectural point of view, however practically speaking, it does not work well. Transfers between terminals are a nightmare (the proposed people-mover between terminals was abandoned due to technical issues) and passenger facilities are woefully inadequate(i.e. no cafés in some of the airside areas of Terminal 2). This is highly symptomatic of French construction in general: Buildings are usually very well conceived from a stylistic point of view, however they are often very poorly built with little attention paid to practical details such as finishes or facilities.
Simon Macklin, Reading, UK

This can happen anywhere and it's not representative of either French architecture nor building experience. Until a full investigation is completed, any finger pointing is "pointless".
Enrique Guzzetti, Bergamo, Italy

I've admired the dramatic ceiling of this building on several recent trips
Michael Scherz, Ettingen, Switzerland
I've admired the dramatic ceiling of this building on several recent trips...while at the same time marvelling at the stunning inefficiency of cross-terminal transport at the same facility. The collapse is dramatic evidence that "form" was much more important than "function" to the designers of this airport.
Michael Scherz, Ettingen, Switzerland

My son and his wife were on Air France 0005 arriving at 6:15 a.m. this morning. They were supposed to phone on their mobile phone to let me know they were there. I still have not heard from them. I have called the emergency phone number and they advised they would get information and phone me back. Does anyone know if the area that collapsed would have affected departing passengers? Please help.
Elba Collier, Austin, TX USA

I feel for both the victims' families, and the engineers & architects who designed and built the terminal. France has always masterfully blended necessary functionality with aesthetics - I hope that that doesn't change. Cancelling flights to avoid an airport terminal etc is rather short sighted and promotes an inert society that seeks existing vice living...
Patrick Deschenes, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada

It seems once again, French Architecture is coming under threat today with the terrible news of the collapse at CdG, remember back to maybe a year or so ago when a platform at the site of the building of the QM2 collapsed killing 15 French citizens. I've never travelled through Paris CdG at all but all I can say is that it is off-putting when you see something like this happen. Sincere condolences to the families who've lost loved ones.
Ben Lord, Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk, England

AS CDG is the best airport in the world, it is unfortunate that this happened. I go through CDG at least 3 or 5 times a month. This airport was built for the convenience of passengers unlike Heathrow or Madrid airports, where commercial interests dominate. My sympathy to those who died and were injured
Yasuyuki Tateishi, Japan

I'm quite shocked as building standards always aim to over-engineer. CDG 2E was a cutting edge one-off design, not a cheap and cheerful building as Calvin, UK (below) suggests. It's these state of the art projects that will require additional scrutiny in future. Sometimes accidents do happen, and people will be in the wrong place at the wrong time. Call me a fatalist, but I'm not going to wrap myself up in cotton wool and cancel my flights just yet thanks.
David W, Bristol, UK

I hope that the safety measures will be improved
Xavier, Manchester, UK
I am obviously shocked by what happened. Now, I am supposed to fly to France tomorrow to this airport and it would be stupid and useless to cancel my flight for any fear that it will happen again. This kind of tragedy shouldn't happen at all, and my thoughts are going for the families of the victim, and I hope that the safety measures will be improved and will help to prevent those accidents.
Xavier, Manchester, UK

It shows the incompetence of French building standards. The Arch at La Defense is fenced off due to large panels falling off, the opera is having to be rebuilt due to large marble sections falling onto the sidewalk below. This is not a surprise for the people who live in France, as it is known the building standards are sub-standard at best.
John Parsons, Paris, France

I still don't know if my colleagues and his pregnant wife are ok. Having travelled through this airport I've blacklisted it from my air travel because it is a nightmare to navigate and looks shoddy. All I can think of now is, can it happen in other airports I use like London, Dubai, Frankfurt and JFK?
Jonathan Howell-Jones, Dubai, United Arab Emirates

It is by far the worst airport I have ever been through and known generically in my household as a toilet
John, Manchester, UK
Firstly like everyone, I feel very much for the families of the bereaved and the injured. Some may be 'relieved' that this doesn't appear to be due to some terrorist outrage - I am not. If this is a generic design or construction issue, the likelihood of further collapse is much more of a threat to the travelling public. It will take many months, if not years to find out the cause, check all the new terminals and rectify any errors. I am not an extensive traveller but I avoid CDG wherever possible. It is by far the worst airport I have ever been through and known generically in my household as a toilet.
John, Manchester, UK

All I can say is I am deeply shocked and appalled by what has happened. My condolences to all who are involved. It is worrying though, that adequate tests were not carried out to make sure the structure is strong enough to withstand the level of sound waves that a building like that would attract from all the air traffic. I hope that the true cause of this catastrophe will be found swiftly so all airports can undergo the now necessary checks to see if any more people might die from these type of constructions.
David Walsh, Canterbury, Kent

I disagree with Michael from Edinburgh - I don't believe French construction is known for being of low quality - and look at the British Millennium Bridge!
James, Leeds

Very sad, but one wonders if the roof is yet another example of things in Europe collapsing under the weight of the burgeoning bureaucracy and regulation?
Justin, Bruton, UK

This is absolutely appalling. It's like something out of the 15th century when building work was not regulated. I'm not sure I agree with Calvin Kane, that it is happening more often (what evidence is there for that?), but I agree that deregulation must be at the heart of this. Somebody from the construction company and the regulatory body should pay a high price for this wholly unnecessary tragedy.
Adam Cooper, London, UK

As with any tragedy, the immediate focus should be the victims and their families. Pointing fingers at the construction firms before the facts are known is not helping anyone.
Darren Miller, Farharm

The terminal should be closed until the cause is established, otherwise more lives are at risk. Those responsible for the construction of this terminal should be held responsible for this tragedy.
Andy, Czech Republic

My prayers go out to the families of the victims
Karen, Atlanta, Georgia USA
My daughter returned two weeks ago from a year of study in Paris, and our family passed safely through CDG on our visits. I was happy to see the tight security even though it made departure a lengthy process. I would be very uneasy now about the stability of the rest of the roof in terminal 2. My prayers go out to the families of the victims.
Karen, Atlana, Georgia USA

Charles de Gaulle is a fabulous airport to travel through, as I have done many many times. Terminals 2E and 2F are the most spectacular of the airport complex and I have to admit I am dumbfounded by this incident. This should not happen in modern construction, and especially with budgets of this magnitude! Imagine if this had happened during the busier hours!
Terris, Washington, USA

It is the constant pressure for firms to construct quickly and cheaply, that tragedies are happening more and more often. Sadly, I cant see things improving, instead they'll get worse. As usual, its going to take something huge before something is done about it. Remember 9/11?
Calvin Kane, UK

I am cancelling a flight planned for next week
Steve Salisbury, Manchester UK
As a frequent user of CDG Terminal 2E, I am very shocked. Terminal 2E is the newest Terminal and has only recently become fully operational. It appears to use the same design principals as the four other "2" terminals. Will this bring all of the "2" complex into question? My shock is nothing compared to the grief of the families of the dead and injured. I have to admit that I am cancelling a flight planned for next week and making alternative arrangements, mostly because of the probable delays but also because of the possible danger.
Steve Salisbury, Manchester UK

A waiting game ...hearing the news and not knowing whether friends who left Dubai on Air France for London via Paris were safe as we knew they would be at the airport around that time. Thankfully, I have since discovered they are safe and well. However an agonising time for us until we received word that they were safe and well.
Catherine Graham, Dubai, United Arab Emirates

I recently went to Egypt from CDG and I found that the terrorist threat and the army presence spoilt my whole holiday, I will never fly again. That was my first ever flight. The train journey to and from Paris was even worse, I have never seen so much unattended baggage in my life.
David, Pyrènèes, France

Having just passed by the area where the roof collapsed, hours before, I am obviously quite shocked and relieved I was not involved in the carnage. I think now is the time (after several incidents in Europe) for European construction standards to be brought into line with that of Britain. This is one area where Britain still 'rules the waves' instead of waving the rules.
Michael, Edinburgh, Scotland

I'm deeply affected by the accident and made me wonder whether the peoples' lives are of great concern knowing that the collapsed part of the terminal is a new construction. I offer my condolences to the families of the victims.
Sara, Kuwait




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