On Friday April 1, 2016 a gas explosion happened in Rue de Bérite in the 6th arrondissement of Paris 1). According to preliminary information, the cause of the explosion is “domestic” and would be due to a gas stove. According to police, a fire broke out first, before causing the explosion that destroyed the building.
On the day of the explosion he wrote: “I think there is nothing left of my little apartment on the third floor right, like some of you knew. Books (many annotated based on future projects), personal and professional papers, manuscripts, original drawings by François Schuiten and several other friends - are probably hopelessly and utterly lost. This is a huge loss, I still do not realize the consequences.”
The next day Benoît Peeters visited what was left of his house. At the scene he had an interview with Le Figaro 4)
Later that day he shared some images of the building on Facebook.
Many Internet users have offered to help rebuild a library, or help launch a call for donations to help him.
Benoît Peeters is thankful for all the comforting messages. “Merci de vos messages de solidarité. Je n’ai pas pu m’approcher de l’immeuble dévasté. Peut-être demain… Je ne me fais aucune illusion. L’appartement est détruit, mais je vais aussi bien que possible, en la circonstance. » Avant de conclure : « Je n’ai pas tout perdu, heureusement. Mais tout de même beaucoup de documents de travail, de livres rares, d’images d’auteurs que j’aime… J’avais mon ordinateur avec moi, ce qui tempère le désastre. Et je suis très entouré. ”
Another author was saved in extremis during this blast. Children's author Dominique de Saint-Mars is the creator of the famous youth series Max and Lili. She was in the building at the sixth floor and was miraculously saved by firefighters 5).
On April 25, 2016 Benoît Peeters could visit his home for the first time after the explosion. As he expected nothing could be saved.
Peeters shared the following pictures on Facebook.