A helping hand for Christ

A worker inspects the Christ the Redeemer statue which was damaged during lightning storms in Rio de Janeiro. The iconic figure's head and right hand were damaged on January 17 when a powerful electric storm swept through the city emitting more than 40,000 lightning strikes.
A worker inspects the Christ the Redeemer statue which was damaged during lightning storms in Rio de Janeiro. The iconic figure's head and right hand were damaged on January 17 when a powerful electric storm swept through the city emitting more than 40,000 lightning strikes.
A worker inspects the Christ the Redeemer statue which was damaged during lightning storms in Rio de Janeiro. The iconic figure's head and right hand were damaged on January 17 when a powerful electric storm swept through the city, emitting more than 40,000 lightning strikes.
A worker inspects the Christ the Redeemer statue which was damaged during lightning storms in Rio de Janeiro. The iconic figure's head and right hand were damaged on January 17 when a powerful electric storm swept through the city, emitting more than 40,000 lightning strikes.
A worker inspects the Christ the Redeemer statue which was damaged during lightning storms in Rio de Janeiro. The iconic figure's head and right hand were damaged on January 17 when a powerful electric storm swept through the city emitting more than 40,000 lightning strikes.
A worker inspects the Christ the Redeemer statue which was damaged during lightning storms in Rio de Janeiro. The iconic figure's head and right hand were damaged on January 17 when a powerful electric storm swept through the city emitting more than 40,000 lightning strikes.

Rio de Janeiro's famed Christ statue is being repaired after two fingers and its head were chipped during recent lightning storms.

Workers began examining the 125-foot (38-metre) Christ the Redeemer statue on Tuesday (local time). After inspecting the damage up close, officials say it'll take about four months to repair.

The statue, which is perched atop a mountain and offering spectacular views of Rio, will remain open to tourists.

The right thumb of the statue was chipped during a violent storm last week, and its right middle finger and a spot on its head were damaged last month.

Officials say they'll place more lightning rods on the statue in an effort to prevent future damage.

The Christ was inaugurated in 1931 and underwent a US$4 million (NZ$4.81m) renovation in 2010.

BRING IT ON: Rio's Christ statue has a few battle scars after its brush with lightning.
BRING IT ON: Rio's Christ statue has a few battle scars after its brush with lightning.
BRING IT ON: Rio's Christ statue has a few battle scars after its brush with lightning.
BRING IT ON: Rio's Christ statue has a few battle scars after its brush with lightning.

AP