WTC Civilians memo prepared on March 28, 2004
All civilians on upper floors died. Most civilians below the impact survived; those who did not were trapped in either elevators or rooms, physically incapable of descending, or advised to remain in place.
Most people below impact survived except those who experienced the same problems as in the north tower. Some evacuees died in the concourse and/or on ground in collapse of south tower. People on upper floors in both buildings did not hear public address announcements after planes hit1". Some heard fire alarms lv. IV Despite some evidence to the contrary, both the DFSD stationed at the North Tower FCS and the former PA FSD recall that at least some floor warden phones were working hi the NT after the impact. Information from 911 was generally standard and inconclusive. Civilians who got out generally relied on their own instincts.
When Flight 11 hit the north face of the 1 WTC at 8:46, there were approximately 5,000 to 7,000 V people in each of the two towers, as opposed to the possible 25,000 (50,000 total) who might have been there as little as fifteen minutes later. v Estimates from news reports.
While approximately 1344 people" would eventually die at or above the impact floors, x This number, which is only an estimate to begin with, varies from report to report. As there is no way to determine it with certainty, may be better to leave out or state more generally, e.g., approximately 1400.
xi NYT, May 26th 2002 "102 MINUTES: Last Words at the Trade Center; Fighting to Lie as the Towers Died", based on interviews, videotapes, photographs. (Comprehensive study of upper floors). City In The Sky: The Rise and Fall of the World Trade Center, by James Glanz and Eric Lipton;
xvl Mike Hurley Interview by Sam Caspersen, 11/20/03; PA transcripts confirm that building was being evacuated after plane hit;
While information from civilians is not conclusive on the issue, there is no reason to doubt that fire safety directors made an evacuation announcement and that it was simply not heard on upper floors because of a failure of electricity"™. In addition to the announcement, a basic fire / evacuation alarm appears to have been triggered by the impactxxv, though this is merely a siren without any words of direction or instruction.
However, a survivors from the 80* and 20th floors do not remember hearing this either*™.
Conversation over the PA Police Desk indicates that a chief was being sent to canvas Building One.*™' "™ Volume II,
At some point, the ESU unit of the NYPD determined that it would be impossible to attempt to a rooftop evacuation. However ESU repellers were prepared to attempt specific individual rescues that might have been feasible (i.e., from windows, or preferably from the roofs), though no individuals were located in these places at time when conditions would permit a rescue attempt. [Must include when, why, and all parties who received information]. Civilians in the building were not made aware of this decision. (See below)
Stuart Lee of Data Synapse was picture hanging out a window on the 106th floor, but his boss does not know time of picture (believes it was in NYT) Alliance Consulting on the 102nd floor of Tower One,
The procedure taught to civilians in fire drills is that fire warden are to gather people in their area to the center of the floor and use an emergency intercom phone to call down to the lobby command center to receive instruction on what to do. These communications are not recorded and there is no evidence of successful use of them by civilians. A person from the 106th floor, who appears to be a fire warden, states in a call to the PA police desk located in the lobby of 5 WTC that the "fire phones are out:" the officer answering the phones confirms that "all the lines are blown right now."llv It is not clear if this is a guess or a conclusion based on other evidence. However, the likely fact that these phones were not working on affected floors would explain civilians' decision use 911. and the police desk if they were aware of it, as a resource for information, which they could reach via cell and/or landline phones. Most civilians who were able to evacuate did so without stopping to take the time to attempt this procedure.lv
911 operators were not equipped to handle the volume or nature of these calls. When a caller from the 103rd floor asked whether to go up or down, the operator states that she does not know the answer; the call is cut off as the woman is begging for helplxi. One operator actually told a caller that the incident occurred in the other building, presumably because tower two was hit at approximately that time.lx" Transcripts from the PA police desk also indicate that people attempting to call 911 actually got "a machine."'""'
On the other hand, PAPD answering phones at the police desk in the lobby of 5 WTC were generally advising civilians to evacuate down the stairs if possible. Civilians who stated that they were trapped were generally advised to get to the ground and await rescue.lxiv However, one person repeatedly calls from the 106th floor looking for advice on a safe location on the floor; she is first told to call back and then advised that help is on the way up; she does not believe based on conditions, that rescue workers will be able to reach them. She is consistently told that people are on their way up.lxv Eventually, when she conveys that the situation is deteriorating, she is told, in answer to her question, that she can break a window if it will get them air.XV1 PAPD likely knew it would be impossible for civilians to attempt to evacuate down from this point.
[Apparently information from the fire command center, manned in the lobby by the deputy fire safety directors in charge of tower one, was not much more helpful, consisting of a recitation of the basic building policy, which is to evacuate the fire floor and the one directly above it and to leave only when directed or "when conditions dictate such actions."lxvii [Is this true?].1
Fire alarms served no real purpose; and, while an evacuation announcement may have been made, it was not audible to people near the impact1™11.
As it turned, the lack of, or conflicting, information given to people on the 92nd floor and above had no real impact on whether or not they survived as their fates were more or less sealed the moment the plane hit the building. If the angle of the plane had been different or the building better designed, they might have had a viable way out. However, given circumstances as they were, there was no means of escape downward, no possibility of evacuation from the roof, and given the magnitude of the fires and the conditions on the floors, not much of a chance that firefighters could reach them before they died or
jumped, even if the tower had not collapsed. Therefore the quality of the information they received was effectively immaterial. That this was the case, however, was not known at the time, and advice to people to stay put could theoretically have kept them from discovering a way out (See below re south tower). Equally, the failure to alert civilians that a rooftop evacuation had been ruled out could have led them, or at least not discouraged them from, going in the wrong direction, e.g., up instead of down. Several 911 callers specifically discuss the prospect of going up the stairs or to roof.lxix After several people were rescued by helicopters in the 1993 bombing, this may have seemed like a feasible prospect, and given the magnitude of the fires below them, the logical choice. After 1993, civilians were apparently instructed never to evacuate up. lxx
However, many do not recall this instruction. Even those who did would not have been unreasonable to conclude that the circumstances of the day provided an exception to the rule. At the very least, civilians should have been given a chance to factor this information—the only constant among a myriad of variable—into a life-and-death decision-making process which was essentially in their own hands. lxvi"
It is unfortunate that the PA system, implemented primarily for the purpose of conveying information in emergency situations, was not able to function on the most relevant floors after the crash; it is understandable that it was not designed with such a catastrophic event in mind; however, a useful recommendation would be to update its capabilities, Sam recommended wireless...
klx Tape 12 Fountain, #117, caller asks if they should go up or down; Tape 16, Pompie #34, caller asks if they can get to the roof, is there a way of getting there; FD says stay where you are and call is disconnected; Tape 17, Johnston #6, person can be heard in background of call yelling 'up or down?'; OSHA letters also indicate that people on upper floors of the north tower attempted to the get to the roof and found the doors locked.lxx
One survivor, who was on the 106th floor of tower 2 in 1993, self-evacuated to the roof with a group of people at that time. He was later told that it was the wrong thing to do and that the procedure was always to evacuate down not up. He was told that people should go at least five floors below the fire below. Other people, including a fire warden, do not remember being given specific instructions on which way to evacuate, e.g., up or down, but instead recall being told to await direction at the time of an incident. Standard fire drills procedure was for the fire wardens (usually 4 or 5 per floor) to lead employees to the
center of the floor and use the special phone to call down to lobby command. Claire Mclntyre and Francis Calton of American Bureau of Shipping, 91st floor;
The northeast corner of the floor is believed to have been demolished with one person asleep inside.1""" The condition of the south side of the floor, which was unoccupied office space, was unknown to interviewees1"""
Among the group was one deputy fire warden and a searcher; they did not call down to the lobby command center; most had worked for the company in 1993 when it was on the 106th floor of tower 2; at least one person remembers being told since never to evacuate up [see above]; they did not stop to call down to the lobby command center;
k"™ All 11 eleven ABS employees who were in that morning descended from this floor; also 4 or 5 electricians / contractors working on the floor successfully evacuated, though one is reported to have died a couple of weeks later from injures; it is unclear whether the electricians descended with the ABS employees, See Int's Claire Mclntyre and Francis Calton, disagreeing.
The person in what may have been stairway B recalls seeing firefighters as high up as the 50's at around 9:20 AM. At some point in the fifties she and a co-worker switched to a less congested stairway. She saw one group of firefighters in the first stairway and two groups in the second one. The firefighters were visibly hot with red faces and civilians were trying to get them water. Civilians moved to single file when they passed.
Other than that, firefighters did not have any real exchange with civilians, who were doing the right thing by going down. The survivor recalls hearing noise over the firefighters' radios but does not remember if they were attempting to transmit messages or having trouble receiving instructions. They appeared just to be climbing. A few times civilians had to move aside to let people pass who were being assisted by co-workerslxxxi.
The same occurred in stairway C where the other 91st floor employee was descending. In all cases in which people were being assisted down, it was by co-workers, not by emergency personnel. Primarily these were people whose physical condition made it hard for them to descend, though some people were seen in stairway C with slight injuries, such as cuts. The person in this stairway recalls encountering a Port Authority security guard dressed in a blue windbreaker (specifically not a blazer) in the 50's with a 2-way radio stationed to guide people down. He informed civilians that the second building had been hit. He did not seem to be having trouble transmitting or receiving messages, and appeared mostly to be listening to the radio.
At the plaza level, there were many emergency workers, stationed approximately fifteen to twenty yards apart, directing civilians down the escalators through the concourse. Civilians were evacuated through the concourse, as per earlier instructions from Mike Hurly, because of the hazards of falling debris and people on the street. They were directed to keep moving, not to look up or into the plaza, and to exit the concourse by Borders bookstore on Church St out of 5 WTC. Emergency workers were stationed throughout the concourse as well.
One person specifically remembers those being PAPD and EMS. At no point did any emergency personnel question either civilian from the 91st floor about where he or she came from, how they got down, or the conditions that they had encountered.
Int Sharon Premoli, Beast Financial Systems;
On the ground floor the air was very bad, people were having respiratory problems, and sprinklers caused water up to above their ankles in the lobby. She was never questioned about what floor she came down from. A security guard helped her over wet floor boards in the lobby and directed the group down the escalator—which was working—to the concourse. She was there when the south tower collapsed.
At around the 10 floor, the water pipes were broken and there did not appear to be lights in the stairwell,*0 though some emergency responders had flashlights. They exited the staircase at the center of the elevator banks where the ceiling was gone, the marble floor was gone, water was pouring down, and the elevator shafts were blown open: there were no lights except for electric lights strung up.xcr. This was at approximately 9:55. There emergency personnel including PAPD and city workers, yelled at them to get moving and directed them through the concourse. In the concourse there were some emergency workers stationed to guide them, as well as PA and company security guards personally escorting civilians out and carrying injured people. The concourse was black and full of smoke and very crowded. The survivor felt that you could tell this building was going to go; you didn't need any engineer to tell you that.
xc" Several groups of people were reportedly rescued by Port Authority workers on the 86th and 89th floors.;
Also, Shirley Dreifus, the owner of Strategic Communications on the 89th floor, who happened to be at home that day, told the media that she directed rescue workers to a group of her employees trapped on in an 89th floor office. 911 calls generally support this; there is one from her at 9:03 reporting 4 to 5 people trapped in that room and one at 9:21 from the people in the office.
Reportedly, Frank Lombardi, the PA chief engineer, pried an elevator open on the 72 floor, allowing people to escape; and a man Jan Demczur pried an elevator door open near the 50* floor with a squeegee allowing occupants to kick through drywall and escape. There is also an 8:49 911 call reporting a group of four on the 87th floor with a fire in the hallway; as the caller's name does not appear on any victim list, I assume this group got themselves out. Mike Hurley also states tat firefighters rescued civilians trapped in an express elevator stuck at ground level.
XC1" A USA Today article from Dec 01 puts the number at 72 and reports 10 bystanders killed by debris; it is unclear whether the 10 killed of the street are included in the 72 or in addition to it; Columbia estimates the number in the 80's.
xcv From before? Now 1 at 9:41 reporting husband trapped with 10 people: doors locked an can't get out; in an office thinks 8945 or 65. from 8901: this may be the Shirley Dreifus group. Tape 31. T3621. #1 (GD).
xcvi Abraham Ilowitz of Met Life; wife reports him trapped at 8:56 in 911 call; 8:52 call to 911 from Mr. Lin, trapped, no smoke in office but hall is full of smoke, male Lin on victim list but not clear if same person (Tape 1, Thomas, #71, GD); 8:57 call from male, Einstein, not on victim list (Tape 1 Thomas #77);
9:02 call from person trapped in office with smoke, directed by FD to put some wet clothing or rags at bottom of door and stay at location (Tape 17, Johnston, GD) (this operator gives same advice later).
xcv" James Gartenberg of Julien J. Studley (deceased) reported trapped there by mother at 8:54; apparently he did live ABC broadcast from room: name appears on victim list; woman also reports son trapped there at 9:09 (appears to be follow up); conference call to 91 lat 9:38 [one caller named Geoff Hipschman?] says FD told them to stay put, and that two people told him the exits were blocked with debris (presumably coworkers), call is very frustrating with operator asking if WTC is between Chruch and West and then taking long time with EMS transfer; caller finally asks for answer as to whether or not ok to break window, meanwhile telling people near him to get on the floor and get soaking towels; operator agrees that's a good idea, but can't tell them to break windows that are not meant to open; goes to look for actual firefighter but they've all left for WTC. [Question: Is EMS dispatch operator in an actual firehouse?]; operator then reiterates SOP and says there's an announcement in the building saying this same thing [???]
XC1X 13 employees of General Telecom on the 83rd floor were trapped by debris in a corner office, confirmed by EW and 911 calls; reported in 911 call from room 8331 at 9:04 or 9:40
c Jonathan Judd witnessed elevator doors on 83rd floor explode (from local elevator across hall), [CNN.com special report];
Manu Dhingra of Andover Brokerage reported being burned by a fireball shooting out of an 83rd floor elevator from which he had just exited; 3 employees of NY Metro Transportation Council reported died (office on 82nd floor),
Clv Virginia DiChiara (Cantor Fitzgerald) and Roy Bell had just transferred into local elevator from 78th floor Sky Lobby when plane hit; doors remained open enough for them to escape, but badly burned; another CF employee, Ari Schonburn, (who apparently died) got them to a security office with 2 guards and about a dozen people.
Eleven people reportedly died from a company occupying space between the 17th and 31st floors.
This accounts for at least  deaths and provides likely circumstances for many more. 911 communications seemed to have followed the same pattern as above. Several people were advised to evacuate if they could, one was advised to listen to the PA system, which was apparently instructing an evacuation, and most were told to stay put. The quality of this advice can be seen from two angles. On one hand, it may have prevented callers who had a viable means of escape from attempting to pursue it, contributing to deaths which could have been avoided. Though several callers indicated that they were trapped [doors locked on 89th floor -what doors????], others appeared to be calling for advice from locations from which they might have escaped. As not all names appear on victim lists, many may have decided to do so on their own, or have followed later instructions by building personnel.
On the other hand, unlike those trapped above the fire, these people had an actual chance of being rescued by emergency personnel if the building had not collapsed. Therefore, it may have been less detrimental to advise them to remain where they were rather than send them to places of potentially greater danger, whereas people on upper floors may have actually been "safer" attempting to evacuate if there was a possibility of being able to do so, given the certainty of the fate they would otherwise meet. However, it seems perverse to conclude that those with an actual chance to escape, e.g., those below the impact, were better advised to stay put than those without one. Without actual and specific information about the floors, it is difficult to evaluate the advice even in hindsight. However, it appears that operators were not basing their advice on these—or really any—considerations of this type; instead they were stating the standard advice which they believed best applied, which is all they were in a position to do. The caller from the 83rd floor specifically wants to know if the fire is above or below them, or if 911 has any information from the outside or from TV and they cannot give them this information and are transferred back and forth and eventually told to stay put [apparently these are GT people who died].
George Mene in suite 4789
cx Empire Blue Cross Blue Shield [check with Emily for confirmation]; one reported to have stayed behind with a disabled friend; other nine theorized to be trapped in elevators or rooms; there is one 91 Icall at 8:57 from Lorraine Sanders on east side of 31st floor which is full of smoke; she does not identify her company and her name does not appear on the victim list. (Tape 1, Thomas, #68, GD); it's also been reported that a Blue Cross employee, Ken Summers, was burned in the lobby by a fireball blast through elevators when the first plane hit; he appears to have survived.
Jim Miller has confirmed that ten Port Authority workers died at a security command post on the 64th floor.CVI ™ Reportedly they were instructed to stay there; see PA radio transcripts.
3 employees of NY Metro Transportation Council reported died (office on 82nd floor),
Manu Dhingra of Andover Brokerage 83rd floor
First Union Bank
Finally, it was reported that 83 elevator mechanics—who might have rescued some of the many people trapped in elevators below the fire—evacuated the building after the second plane hit.
Morgan Stanley's chief of security successfully evacuated all but 6 out of 3700 employees, 3 of whom were security officials,
In WTC 2 some people were personally directed back upstairs by security officials in the lobby. cxxvl
As they were exiting the turnstiles, they encountered two security guards (believed to be from Summit Security). One of them said "Where are you going? Go back to your office. Your office is secure." At that time, an announcement came over the PA system to the same effect.
[PAPD gave an order over Channel W to effect a complex-wide evacuation at approximately 9AM; however, this seems only to have reached other police officers on Channel W, as opposed to the fire safety directors manning the PA system in the lobbies of the buildings who were on Channel X.]
The decision to encourage civilians to remain in the building is probably the most highly questioned aspect of the emergency response, as it contributed to the greatest numbers of deaths by the most quantifiable measures.
On the other hand, if a plane had not crashed into the south tower, a decision to evacuate the building might not have been as wise. An evacuation order would have put thousands of additional people on the street, significantly increasing congestion in a highly hazardous area. This could have resulted in many more people being killed by falling debris. More seriously, a secondary attack could have occurred on the street in anticipation of the mob. There was less reason at the time to anticipate the type of secondary attack which did in fact occur, e.g., another plane hitting. This does not mean that advice to remain in the building was necessarily correct, but rather that its wisdom is debatable. Therefore, it is not the type of "mistake" that should be taken into account in crafting recommendations for the future, as its incorrectness was contingent rather than necessary.
Meanwhile, on the 81st floor, the person who had heard the cries for help found a man trapped behind a wall. cxllx This person had been standing by a window "looking toward the statue of liberty" when he saw the plane approach his building. He dove under a desk and it turned out to be the only structure that stood firm when the plane's wing wedged itself into his office door a mere twenty feet away. Immediately the ceiling caved in and the walls were knocked down, like a total demolition. The air was thick, like someone had thrown cement into it, and smelled profusely of jet fuel. There was no light except from the wing of the plane which started to burn; sparks were emitted from dislodged wires dangling in the path of water from the sprinklers. He began crawling across the floor and was led in the direction of stairway A by the fire warden's flashlight. He did not see any other people on the floor and believes, based on its conditions, that no one could have survived. Even if they had survived the impact, they would not have been able to reach the stairs soon without dying of suffocation. He says that it was extremely difficult to breathe and considers it a miracle that he survived. cxlix Stanley Praimnath;
Also a security guard who worked for a company on the 84th floor and used to be employed by Summit Security believes there is no way that stairways B & C could have survived the collapse given their location. clv
The Times estimates that approximately three hundred people remained alive at or above the impact floors, a lower number than in the north tower because many had evacuated, though probably a higher percentage. Also people were spread across a larger number of floors, making conditions more tolerable and leading to less necessity to break windows. Several 911 calls between 9:15 and 9:20 indicate people alive on the actual floors of impact but stuck in bad conditions. clvi The survivor from the 78th floor sky lobby has heard that the man in the red bandanna moved many injured, but living, people into stairwells for emergency workers to retrieve. On the 84th floor, a company security dvm Int Jerry Banks; JB was communicating with senior security officials on the 84th by walkie-talkie from his location on Broadway and Liberty; after the first plane hit, he was carried down the stairs in a swarm of people and ended up exiting the building; he apparently maintained communication with co-workers inside the building via company walkie-talkies the whole way down the stairs:
Unlike in the north tower, however, the lack of, or conflicting, advice these people received may have had a much more devastating impact, as better advice might have led them to a safe exit down stairway.
A more straightforward "mistake" on the part of authorities was their failure to inform civilians that a rooftop evacuation had been ruled out. As discussed above, there was literally no downside to making this fact known and, unlike in the north tower, the failure to do so may have had a material impact. A group of at least 200 people is reported to have gone to the roof in search of rescue, led by a window washer with a key.clxxi As it turned out, they were not able actually to get onto the rooflxx". However, they wasted valuable time attempting to pursue this option instead of looking for a way down. Others appear to have considered this possibility as well. As mentioned above, a 911 caller from the 88th floor asked if he should go up or down. The answer was inconclusive, but he was not advised to go down in no uncertain terms. Given his location it is highly possible that he could have gotten to stairway A. If civilians knew that that a rooftop rescue had been conclusively ruled out, they would have been much more likely to attempt to proceed down even if it meant passing through zones of danger. A combination of this and the information about the stairway might have led many to safety. The information about the roof should have been passed to the fire safety director in the building, 911 operators and any other person who may have been fielding calls from civilians.
At some point between the 70's and the 30's a man with a neck injury ran past the person descending from the 84th floor; otherwise he passed only a handful of people on the stairs, most of them elderly or overweight. At approximately the 2nd or 3rd floor, or possibly the mezzanine level, he encountered about five firefighters going up. This was at about 9:25 AM. In the lobby, he got to the center elevator banks where the freight elevators were and saw mostly NYPD, PAPD, security guards and a man with a head injury propped up against the wall. He was directed by Port Authority security to the concourse where emergency personnel were stationed approximately every thirty feet and directed him towards the 5 WTC exit. One female cop told him not to use his cell phone because it would use up needed signals. He was not questioned by any authorities about what floor he had descended from or what staircase he took.
Somewhere in the 60's they began encountering firefighters climbing the stairs who told them to go to the 40th floor for help. They saw about three or four sets of firefighters in all, who were in full gear and looked very tired. This was at approximately 9:30 AM. On the 40th floor, they met 1 firefighter and 2 Summit security guards who got them some water and took them (1 FF and 1 guard) down to the lobby in a small elevator.0 xxvn There they were turned over to a uniformed female security guard with a walkie-talkie who escorted them through the concourse to the designated exit on Church St out of 5 WTC.
In the lobby, they were directed by a female security official (probably PA because no FF or police gear) to evacuate through the concourse and exit to the east near Sam Goody on Liberty Street. As they were exiting the lobby, the person rescued from the 81st floor workers performing light triage, all of whom seemed to be in a daze. He yelled for them to go, that there was no one up there (as he believed everyone else to be dead) but they were "belching out: orders to run to Liberty, yelling don't look up or around, just run. As he exited the lobby, he saw them continuing to run the other way, e.g., in the direction of the stairs he had just come from.
Additional firefighters were also continuing to enter the building. In the concourse there was random activity of firefighters, most getting themselves organized, not giving any specific instructions to civilians. As they exited the concourse and came out 4 of WTC, a firefighter told them, "If you're going to cross Liberty Street, you've got to go for it" (referring to danger of falling debris). One of the men asked if he should look up to determine an appropriate time to go, but the firefighter said no, they should just go for it.
He looked up anyway and they managed to cross safely and made it to Trinity Church by the time the south tower collapsed minutes later.
It is indeterminable how many deaths occurred below the impact in the south tower. USA Today reports that only four people died, but goes onto say that six died from Morgan Stanley. The discrepancy may be due to the fact that at least one MS employee was apparently at the WOW conference, 0'"™" but it would be an odd way to put it.
Emergency personnel were obviously too focused on the towers to pay too much attention to nearby apartment buildings and offices. 911 callers from nearby locations were mostly told to use their judgment as to whether or not to evacuate. Civilians generally evacuated at key points in the morning, either after one of the two planes, or after the south tower collapsed. Many civilians self-evacuated and some left on the instructions of building security. By the time the south tower collapsed, most people were on their way out of the area. (More details on this later). PA transcripts state that all surrounding buildings are being evacuated. clxxxii
According to many, the streets were pretty clear of civilians, and those who were there were trying to get away from the scene. On Church Street, where people were exiting, there were emergency workers directing civilians to move away and walk north or east, though at least one survivor recalls the streets being very crowded. cxc"1. The two people who had exited the concourse from 4 WTC had made it to Trinity Church by the time the tower had collapsed. One remembers the streets being empty, though the other remembers thousands of civilians stopped to watch. A person who evacuated from a nearby office cxciv right after the collapse said there were emergency personnel directing traffic firmly and directing hundreds of people east and north.
As to fire drills, civilians varied on whether they found them helpful. At least one person said they caused him to know where the stairs were on September 11th. Others said they did not pay much attention (as often happens) and suggested they would have been more helpful if civilians were actually taken onto the stairs. Therefore, while full evacuation drills might be unfeasible in buildings of that height, it could be useful to have civilians enter the stairways and possibly even begin a descent as part of standard fire drill exercises. Civilians who were at the towers in 1993 found the physical improvements to the building very helpful.