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Small fire breaks out on Superdome roof ahead of Saints return in Week 4

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A small fire started on the Caesars Superdome roof on Tuesday afternoon in New Orleans that caused thick black smoke to billow into the sky. 

The fire was spotted by local media at around 12:30 p.m. local time, but within 20 minutes the fire appeared to be dissipating. The New Orleans Fire Department responded to the scene. The smoke started out as a dark black streak that could be seen lifting above the city. It turned to light gray and went out. 

The New Orleans Saints are scheduled to return home to the Superdome for games after Week 3. They're scheduled to host the New York Giants on Oct. 3. The team relocated to Texas when Hurricane Ida hit in August and played a home game in Jacksonville. 

Superdome undergoes re-brand

Fox 8 Live reported there is work being done at the stadium to switch the logo from its old Mercedes Benz to the new partner, Caesars. The re-brand recently started up again after being halted during Ida. The deal was first reported in March and approved in July. The exclusive naming-rights partnership is for 20 years. 

Workers have also been cleaning the roof, local outlets reported. One day before the fire, the Louisiana State Bond Commission approved $28 million in renovations. The commission at first tried to delay the funding because of the franchise's COVID-19 policies at home games meant to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.  

Saints plan to return to Superdome

Superdome
The Saints plan to return to the Superdome on Oct. 3. (AP Photo/Tyler Kaufman)

The Saints had to cancel their preseason finale at home when Hurricane Ida continued to gain strength as it approached New Orleans. They left for Texas and were able to use the Dallas Cowboys facility at first. 

At the end of August, they struck a deal with TCU and were able to use their facilities as the season began to get underway. They hosted the season opener against the Green Bay Packers in Jacksonville. 

Their Week 3 game is in New England and they plan to return to their home stadium after that. Minimal damage to the Superdome was repaired after the hurricane hit, though damage to buildings, homes and infrastructure is still an issue.