ALL ABOUT 9/11
The World Trade Center (WTC) was a 16-acre commercial complex in lower Manhattan
that contained seven buildings, a large plaza, and an underground shopping mall that connected six of the buildings. The centerpieces of the complex were the Twin Towers.
On September 11, 2001, the entire complex was destroyed in a terrorist attack that has
come to be referred to as “9/11.”
The Twin Towers were the tallest buildings in New York City. At 110 stories each,
1 WTC (North Tower) and 2 WTC (South Tower) provided nearly 10 million square
feet of office space for about 35,000 people and 430 companies. For a brief period
upon their completion in 1973, they were the tallest buildings in the world. They
attracted roughly 70,000 commuters and tourists daily.
WHAT HAPPENED ON 9/11/01
9/11″ is shorthand for four coordinated terrorist attacks carried out by al-Qaeda, an
Islamist extremist group, that occurred on the morning of September 11, 2001.
The attacks killed 2,977 people.
On the morning of September 11, 2001, 19 terrorists from al-Qaeda, hijacked
four commercial airplanes, deliberately crashing two of the
planes into the upper floors of the North and South towers of the World Trade Center
complex and a third plane into the Pentagon in Arlington, Va. The Twin Towers
ultimately collapsed because of the damage sustained from the impacts and the
resulting fires. After learning about the other attacks, passengers on the fourth
hijacked plane, Flight 93, fought back, and the plane was crashed into an empty field in western Pennsylvania about 20 minutes by air from Washington, DC.
The attacks killed nearly 3,000 people from 93 nations. 2,753 people were killed in New
York, 184 people were killed at the Pentagon and 40 people were killed on Flight 93.
The hijacked Flight 11 was crashed into floors 93 to 99 of the North Tower (1 WTC) at
8:46 a.m. The hijacked Flight 175 struck floors 77 to 85 of the South Tower (2 WTC) 17
minutes later at 9:03 a.m. When the towers were struck, between 16,400 and 18,000
people were in the WTC complex. Of those, the vast majority evacuated safely. As they
rushed out, first responders rushed in trying to save those still trapped or injured.
The fires from the impacts were intensified by the planes’ burning jet fuel.
They weakened the steel support trusses, which attached each of the floors to the
buildings’ exterior walls. Along with the initial damage to the buildings’ structural
columns, this ultimately caused both towers to collapse. The five other buildings in the
WTC complex were also destroyed because of damage sustained when the Twin
The collapse of the buildings left the site devastated, with ruins towering roughly 17
stories and spread beyond the 16-acre site. Thousands of volunteers came to Ground
Zero to help with the rescue, recovery and clean-up efforts, and on May 30, 2002, the
last piece of WTC steel was ceremonially removed.
DID YOU KNOW THAT THIS WAS NOT THE FIRST TIME THE WORLD TRADE CENTER WAS ATTACKED WATCH THE MOVIE BELOW TO LEARN MORE.