It was shocking timing in France on Thursday, as a fire broke out near the Eiffel Tower in Paris as a deadly incident took place in the resort city of Nice.
Moments after a driver drove onto a sidewalk in Nice and plowed into a crowd of Bastille Day celebrators, killing 80 people, smoke was seen at the base of the famed Eiffel Tower (see video footage below).
Fire at the Eiffel tower https://t.co/5iE0rmGt2qpic.twitter.com/Eh8Dv3wEyu via @alexisthiebaut
— Liveuamap (@Liveuamap) July 14, 2016
According to the NY Daily News, local police said in a statement that the two incidents were not related and that the fire in Paris was accidental.
#BREAKING: Black smoke seen billowing from area near Eiffel Tower in France. Pic @laxtitia. h/t @RT_compic.twitter.com/MgKwhPYgum
— Tim Williams (@realtimwilliams) July 14, 2016
Caused after a truck carrying fireworks caught fire, the blaze next to the tower was a “technical incident,” the Paris Police Prefecture announced said on Twitter.
Meanwhile, officials and eyewitnesses described the incident in Nice as a deliberate attack.
According to AP, Christian Estrosi -- the president of the region of France that includes Nice -- the driver appeared to have "completely premeditated behavior” during the incident, and his truck was “loaded with arms, loaded with grenades."
The truck driver was subsequently killed by police.