After 9/11: The New Normal


Toxic dust

The dust from the collapsed towers was "wildly toxic", according to air pollution expert and University of California Davis Professor Emeritus Thomas Cahill. [4] Much of the thousands of tons of debris resulting from the collapse of the Twin Towers was pulverized concrete, which is known to cause silicosis upon inhalation. The remainder consisted of more than 2,500 contaminants, [5] more specifically: 50% non-fibrous material and construction debris 40% glass and other fibers 9.2% cellulose and 0.8% of the extremely toxic carcinogen asbestos, as well as detectable amounts of [6] lead and mercury. There were also unprecedented levels of dioxins and PAHs from the fires which burned for three months. [7] Many of the dispersed substances (asbestos, crystalline silica, lead, cadmium, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons) are carcinogenic other substances can trigger kidney, heart, liver and nervous system deterioration. This was well known by the EPA at the time of collapse. [5] A case report funded by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) and performed by Mount Sinai School of Medicine observed carbon nanotubes in dust samples and in the lungs of several 9/11 responders. [8] The understanding of the smoke and dust in the air was not fully understood at the time the World Trade Center Health Program's Dr. Michael Crane touched upon this issue in an interview with Newsweek stating: [9]

“We will never know the composition of that cloud, because the wind carried it away, but people were breathing and eating it. What we do know is that it had all kinds of god-awful things in it. Burning jet fuel. Plastics, metal, fiberglass, asbestos. It was thick, terrible stuff. A witch’s brew.”

These toxic exposures have led to debilitating illnesses among rescue, recovery, and cleanup workers, and the pulmonary fibrosis death of NYPD member Cesar Borja. [10] [11] [12] [13] Increasing numbers of cases are appearing in which first responders are developing serious respiratory ailments. [14] Health effects also extended to some residents, students, and office workers of Lower Manhattan and nearby Chinatown. [15]

Dr. Edwin M. Kilbourne, a high level federal scientist, issued a memo on September 12, 2001, to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention advising against the speedy return to buildings in the area because of possible hazards from various toxic materials. [16]

Associate City Health Commissioner Kelly McKinney on October 6, 2001, said that proper safety protocol for WTC site workers was not being enforced. [16]

A study of 5,000 rescue workers published in April 2010 by Dr. David J. Prezant – the chief medical officer for the Office of Medical Affairs at the New York City Fire Department – found that all the workers studied had impaired lung functions, with an average impairment of 10 percent. The study found that firefighters who arrived on the Sept. 11 morning had the worst impairments, which presented themselves within the first year after the attack, with little or no improvements in the ensuing six years. 30 to 40% of workers were reporting persistent symptoms and 1000 of the group studied were on "permanent respiratory disability." Dr. Prezant noted that medication given to the victims can ease but not cure the symptoms. Dr. Byron Thomashow, medical director of the Center for Chest Disease and Respiratory Failure at New York – Presbyterian/Columbia hospital, said that "The drop-off in lung function initially is really quite significant and doesn't get better. That's not what we've generally come to expect in people with fire and smoke exposure. They usually recover." [17]

Cancer risk

A study published in December 2012 in The Journal of the American Medical Association observed the possible association between exposure to the World Trade Center debris and excess cancer risk. Over 55,000 individuals enrolled in the World Trade Center Health Registry, separated by rescue and/or recovery workers and non-rescue and/or recovery workers, were observed from 2003 or 2004 to December 31, 2008. The findings showed the overall incidence of all cancers among rescue and/or recovery workers was not significantly elevated, compared to non-rescue and/or recovery workers. Despite this, the incidences for prostate cancer, thyroid cancer, and multiple myeloma were significantly elevated among the rescue and/or recovery workers, in the final year of observation. [18]

On November 28, 2006, the Village Voice reported that several dozen recovery personnel have developed cancer – as opposed to having contracted respiratory ailments, and that doctors have argued that some of these cancers developed as a result of the exposure to toxins at the Ground Zero site: "To date, 75 recovery workers at ground zero have been diagnosed with blood cell cancers that a half-dozen top doctors and epidemiologists have confirmed as having been likely caused by that exposure." [19]

On September 11, 2018, 17 years after the attacks, a New York City law firm reported that at least 15 men were diagnosed with male breast cancer in the intervening years due to the attacks. [20]

Through the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund, individuals who have been diagnosed with cancer as a result of their physical exposure to the toxins in the World Trade Center blast zone or the surrounding New York City area between September 11, 2001, and May 30, 2002, are able to receive financial compensation for the collateral damage they personally suffered because of the attack. Through free legal guidance, affected individuals can clarify their specific eligibility for the VCF, while receiving the necessary logistic aid in order to fulfill a compensation claim by the current cut-off date for ‘timely’ applications, July 29, 2021. [21] [22]

Psychological effects

A study published two months after 9/11 found that Americans across the country experienced substantial symptoms of stress after the attacks. [23] Two subsequent studies found that exposure to the attacks was a predictor of the development of PTSD. [24] [25]


Dr. Larry Norton of Memorial Sloan-Kettering Hospital said "Why isn't the whole nation mobilizing to take care of the chronic health impact of this disaster?". Dr. Norton cited the 70 percent illness rate among first responders as "a wake up call." Dr. Nathaniel Hupert of Weill Cornell Medical College, quoted by Jill Gardiner of the October 4, 2006, issue of the New York Sun said that premature deaths and other ailments of dogs in the area are "our canary in the coalmine." [26] Richard Clapp and David Ozonoff, professors of environmental health at Boston University School of Public Health Michael Thun, director of epidemiological research at the American Cancer Society Francine Laden, assistant professor of environmental epidemiology at Harvard School of Public Health Jonathan Samet, chairman of the epidemiology department at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and Charles Hesdorffer, associate professor of oncology at Johns Hopkins School of Medicine argue that the cancer incidence among monitored individuals cannot be called a coincidence. They assert that the Ground Zero cloud was likely the cause of the illnesses. [19] The American College of Preventative Medicine is concerned that malignant mesothelioma will develop among persons exposed to Ground Zero air. [27]

There is scientific speculation that exposure to various toxic products and the pollutants in the air surrounding the Towers after the WTC collapse may have negative effects on fetal development. Due to this potential hazard, a notable children's environmental health center (Columbia University Center for Children's Health) is currently analyzing the children whose mothers were pregnant during the WTC collapse, and were living or working near the World Trade Center towers. The staff of this study assesses the children using psychological testing every year and interviews the mothers every six months. The purpose of the study is to determine whether there is significant difference in development and health progression of children whose mothers were exposed, versus those who were not exposed after the WTC collapse. [28]

Mount Sinai Medical Center is conducting an ongoing monitoring program, World Trade Center Worker and Volunteer Medical Screening Program. [29] A leader of Mt. Sinai monitoring efforts is Stephen M. Levin, Medical Director of the Mount Sinai – Irving J. Selikoff Center for Occupational and Environmental Medicine. [30] First responders met in a conference, November 11, 2006, in an effort to monitor responders' health. The event was organized by the World Trade Center Monitoring Program. [31]

An ongoing Pennsylvania State University/Monmouth University study reported that respiratory illnesses grew by more than two hundred percent in the year and a half after the September 11 attacks. (This was the first study that monitored police officers at the Ground Zero site. It was published in the "Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine.") In this study of 471 police officers, 19 percent of the officers in October 2001 experienced shortness of breath 44 percent of the officers experienced shortness of breath in April 2003. The percentage of the 471 officers coughing up phlegm increased from 14 percent in October 2001 to 31 percent in 2003. [32]

A 2006 medical study of fire fighters reported that those personnel who inhaled Ground Zero air essentially lost 12 years of lung function. [32] Additionally, a Mount Sinai report found that 70 percent of recovery and rescue workers reported an increase in debilitated respiratory function between 2002 and 2004. [32] [33]

A 2008 report by New York City's Department of Health indicated that up to 70,000 people might have stress disorder due to the attack. The findings were the result of the city's health registry of September 11 first responders, residents, and others. [34]

Ground Zero-related worker's compensation

Apparently, out of at least 100,000 eligible, fewer than 14,000 have registered, as reported by the National Council for Occupational Safety and Health. The final registration deadline for September 11-related workers' compensation was August 14, 2007. [35]

On July 12, 2007, Governor Eliot Spitzer extended to August 14, 2008, the filing deadline for worker's compensation claims, for people who worked or volunteered at Ground Zero. Individuals would register with the State Workers' Compensation Board. [36] New York Governor Andrew Cuomo granted a third extension for Ground Zero rescue, recovery or clean up workers to file a notice of participation for worker' compensation benefits. This applies to workers who had not yet filled or who were denied between September 2015 and September 2017, with the new deadline being September 11, 2022. [37]

President George W. Bush's alleged manipulation of EPA statements

President George W. Bush has been faulted by the Sierra Club for allegedly interfering with the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) interpretations and pronouncements regarding air quality. [38]

Early statement by Christine Todd Whitman

On September 18, 2001, EPA administrator Christine Todd Whitman told the public, via a press release, "We are very encouraged that the results from our monitoring of air-quality and drinking-water conditions in both New York and near the Pentagon show that the public in these areas is not being exposed to excessive levels of asbestos or other harmful substances" and that "Given the scope of the tragedy from last week, I am glad to reassure the people of New York … that their air is safe to breathe and the water is safe to drink." [19]

Alleged EPA deceptions about Ground Zero air quality

An August 2003 report by the Office of the Inspector General of the EPA said the Bush administration pressured the EPA to remove cautionary information about the air quality at Ground Zero. [39]

Numerous key differences between the draft versions and final versions of EPA statements were found. A recommendation that homes and businesses near ground zero be cleaned by professionals was replaced by a request that citizens follow orders from NYC officials. Another statement that showed concerns about "sensitive populations" was deleted altogether. Language used to describe excessive amounts of asbestos in the area was altered drastically to minimize the dangers it posed. [40]

In September 2006, the U.S. House Committee on Homeland Security held a two-day hearing on illnesses caused by post-9/11 air quality. Former EPA head Christine Todd Whitman was a frequent target of criticism. [41]

EPA scientist Dr. Cate Jenkins said on CBS television on September 8, 2006, that agency officials lied about the air quality in the weeks following September 11, 2001. She said that in her opinion the EPA knew about the toxicity of the air, and that WTC dust included asbestos and disturbingly high PH levels. She said that some of the dust was "as caustic and alkaline as Drano." [42] Dr. Marjorie Clarke also warned of the consequences of breathing toxic dust and fumes. Yet, agencies did not heed her warnings. [43]

The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation conducted a study of the World Trade Center site, but refused to release the results of its study, saying they were part of a criminal investigation. [44]

On September 13, 2006, Congressmen Jerrold Nadler (NY), Anthony Weiner (NY), Bill Pascrell Jr. (NJ) filed a request with US Attorney General Alberto Gonzales to investigate whether criminal charges may be brought against Whitman for lying about air safety in the Ground Zero area. [45]

Alleged government downplaying of health risks

Critics assert that government officials – notably Bush, Christine Todd Whitman (former head of the US EPA), and New York City mayor Rudy Giuliani – downplayed the health risks of the area and rushed to reopen the area around Ground Zero, although this posed a grave and immediate health risk to first responders. [46] Many corporations were eager to hear the news of the New York Stock Exchange being reopened only a few days after the collapse. [47] On June 25, 2007, Whitman testified before a House of Representatives committee chaired by Jerrold Nadler. She said that a White House official informed her that President Bush expected that the Financial District would reopen within three days, that is, by September 14. She said that she replied that this would be cumbersome, since the EPA was still judging the health situation in the area. [47] Investigations after the attacks suggest that the Bush administration pressured Whitman and Giuliani to provide health reassurances in order to keep Wall Street operating. [48] [49] [50]

Two days after the collapse of the World Trade Center, mayor Giuliani said, "The air is safe as far as we can tell, with respect to chemical and biological agents." [51] Giuliani, in attempting to deflate New York Daily News journalist Juan Gonzalez' reportage of the 9/11 air issue, claimed that "the problems created… are not health-threatening." [52] In the first month after the attacks, the mayor said, "The air quality is safe and acceptable." [5]

In November 2001, Giuliani wrote to the city's Congressional delegation and urged that the city's liability for Ground Zero illnesses be limited, in total, at $350 million. Two years after Mayor Giuliani finished his term, FEMA appropriated $1 billion to a special insurance fund to protect the city against 9/11 lawsuits. [53]

In a September 18, 2006 New York Daily News article titled, "Rudy's Black Cloud: WTC health risks may hurt Prez Bid", Sally Regenhard, mother of firefighter Christian Regenhard who died on September 11, is quoted, "There's a large and growing number of both FDNY families, FDNY members, former and current, and civilian families who want to expose the true failures of the Giuliani administration when it comes to 9/11." She told the New York Daily News that she intends to "Swift Boat" Giuliani. [49]

Then senator Hillary Clinton contemplated calling Giuliani to testify before a Senate committee on whether the government failed to protect recovery workers from the effects of polluted Ground Zero air. [54] [55]

Congressman Nadler was quoted in a March 1, 2007, "New York Sun" article, "Potential Clinton-Giuliani Battle Brews Over 9/11 Health Issues." He said that he "absolutely" wishes to interview Giuliani administration officials regarding the environment in the aftermath of the September 11 attacks. He asked, "Who made decisions, if any, that resulted unnecessarily in a lot of people getting sick?" [56]

Handling of cleanup procedure

A May 14, 2007, New York Times article, "Ground Zero Illness Clouding Giuliani's Legacy", gave the interpretation that thousands of workers at Ground Zero have become sick and that "many regard Mr. Giuliani's triumph of leadership as having come with a human cost." The article reported that he seized control of the cleanup of Ground Zero, taking control away from established federal agencies, such as the Federal Emergency Management Agency, the Army Corps of Engineers and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration. He instead handed over responsibility to the "largely unknown" city Department of Design and Construction. Documents indicate that the Giuliani administration never enforced federal requirements requiring the wearing of respirators. Concurrently, the administration threatened companies with dismissal if cleanup work slowed. [53]

Workers worked without proper respirators. They wore painters' masks or no covering. Specialists claim that the only effective protection against toxins such as airborne asbestos, is a special respirator. New York Committee for Occupational Safety and Health industrial hygienist David Newman said, "I was down there watching people working without respirators." He continued, "Others took off their respirators to eat. It was a surreal, ridiculous, unacceptable situation." [51]

The local EPA office sidelined the regional EPA office. Dr. Cate Jenkins, a whistle-blower EPA scientist, said that on September 12, 2001, a regional EPA office offered to dispatch 30 to 40 electron microscopes to the WTC pit to test bulk dust samples for the presence of asbestos fibers. Instead, the local office chose the less effective polarized light microscopy testing method. Dr. Jenkins alleged that the local office refused, saying, "We don't want you f—ing cowboys here. The best thing they could do is reassign you to Alaska." [51]

Lawsuit, settlement, and treatment costs

First responders and other individuals are suing the City of New York. Lawyers are criticizing the city for failing to provide proper facial ventilators to clean-up workers. [57] On October 17, 2006, federal judge Alvin K. Hellerstein rejected New York City's motion to dismiss lawsuits that requested health payments to the first responders. [58]

On November 19, 2010, attorneys said that plaintiffs accepted a settlement which should lead to $625 million being paid to more than 10,000 workers experiencing problems as a result of inadequate preparation to work at Ground Zero. Not all affected participated, but those who did not would be eligible for a portion of $7.4 billion provided by the James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act, which the U.S. House passed in September 2010. New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg asked the Senate to do the same. The plaintiffs in the settlement would also be eligible for compensation under the Zadroga Act. [59]

On December 22, 2010, the United States Senate passed a 9/11 Health Bill running against opposition of the Republican Party and aided by advocacy from comedian Jon Stewart. [60] The measure calls for providing $1.8 billion until 2015 to monitor and treat injuries stemming from exposure to toxic dust and debris at World Trade Center site. There are nearly 60,000 people enrolled in health-monitoring and treatment programs related to the 9/11 attack. The bill is formally known as the James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act, named after a New York police detective who took part in the rescue efforts at ground zero and later developed breathing complications. [61]

On October 28, 2007, Jim Riches reported that the City of New York and litigating first responders have shown interest in a legal settlement, to resolve lawsuits against the city. The settlement would yield a financial settlement apportioned in the following manner: forty percent to lawyers, and sixty percent to litigants. [62]

The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health issued a study on July 17, 2007, indicating that the estimates for monthly costs of treating Ground Zero workers had increased from around $6 million per month to $20 million per month by the end of 2007. The causes of the increased expense lie in the increasing numbers of workers getting sick and the worsening illnesses of workers. This indicated that the planned U.S. House appropriation legislation (of $50 million) for the sick workers, for the coming year, would be inadequate. The number of workers that have registered with area hospitals' Ground Zero programs has reached 37,000. With about 500 new workers registering each month, the institute estimated that the number of registrants could reach 65,000 in two years. (The institute is overseen by the Department of Health and Human Services.) [63] 40 percent of the World Trade Center workers being monitored by a Mount Sinai Hospital study lack health insurance. [42]

In June 2008, New York City argued in federal court that 30 percent of the September 11 plaintiffs did not have serious injuries. [64] This is part of a larger debate over the number of people sickened by the collapse of the Twin Towers. [ citation needed ]

World Trade Center health administrators

On June 11, 2007, Mayor Bloomberg appointed Jeffrey Hon as World Trade Center health coordinator. Hon had previously worked as the spokesman for the American Red Cross September 11 Recovery Program. People have offered conflicting statements, however, regarding Hon's role. In an interview with the New York Daily News Hon said that his role was to correct inconsistencies in city agencies and to handle related pension issues. Yet, Mayor Bloomberg said that Hon's role would not involve handling pension-related issues. A press release also indicated that the coordinator will "provide a central repository of WTC health information and ensure effective communication with those who may be experiencing 9/11-related health effects." [65] [66]

Dr. John Howard was appointed the medical administrator of the federal World Trade Center Health Program funded through the James Zadroga Act. On July 22, 2011, Howard's report on a study of a link between particulate exposure in the aftermath and cancer was released. The report said that there was insufficient evidence of a link between particulate exposure and cancer. The report's findings meant that many first responders to the attacks would be limited in their access to funds for medical treatment. Three New York Congressional delegation Representatives, Peter T. King, Carolyn B. Maloney and Jerrold Nadler, said that they believed that further studies would indicate a link between exposures and cancer. [67]

Lawsuit by area residents

Lower Manhattan and Brooklyn residents brought a 111-page lawsuit against the EPA for purported deception of the public about hazards of Ground Zero air and dust. A major force behind this effort is Brooklyn resident Jenna Orkin of the World Trade Center Environmental Organization. On February 2, 2006, Federal Court Judge Deborah Batts issued an 83-page statement, indicating that there are sufficient grounds for the case to proceed. She also rejected granting Whitman immunity from the lawsuit. [68]

On December 10, 2007, legal proceedings began in a case on the question of responsibility of government officials in the aftermath of the September 11, 2001, attacks. Former EPA Director Whitman is among the defendants in the suit plaintiffs in the suit allege that Whitman is at fault for saying that the downtown Manhattan air was safe in the aftermath of the attacks. [69]

On April 22, 2008, the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit ruled that EPA head Whitman could not be held liable for saying to World Trade Center area residents that the air was safe for breathing after the buildings collapse. The appeals court said that Whitman had based her information on contradictory information and statements from President Bush. The U.S. Department of Justice had argued that holding the agency liable would establish a risky legal precedent because future public officials would be afraid to make public statements. Judge Deborah Batts had previously declined to dismiss Whitman as a defendant, saying that her actions were "conscience-shocking". [70]

An arbitrator has said that most of the complainants that did not participate in an earlier fund (created by Congress) would be granted settlement awards. The awards would total $500 million. This resolution would involve all but 3 of the nearly 100 litigants. [71]

Ground Zero workers' and area residents' protests

On January 30, 2007, Ground Zero workers and groups such as Sierra Club and Unsung Heroes Helping Heroes met at the Ground Zero site and urged President George W. Bush to spend more money on aid for sick Ground Zero workers. They said that the $25 million that Bush promised for the ill workers was inadequate. A Long Island iron-worker, John Sferazo, at the protest rally said, "Why has it taken you 5½ years to meet with us, Mr. President?" [72]

Area residents joined the protest. Mariama James, who lives within blocks of the Ground Zero site, said that she became ill after cleaning the Ground Zero debris and dust from her apartment. "Recovery workers aren't the only people that were affected by this disaster," she said. "There are other people in need of treatment and monitoring." [72]

Ground Zero workers' lawsuit

Families of Ground Zero workers have filed a mass lawsuit against the city. Andrew Carboy of the firm, Sulivan, Pappain, Block, McGrath and Cannovo said of the deaths of Cesar Borja, James Zadroga, and Mark DeBiase, "If Borja, Zadroga and now DeBiase isn't a wakeup call for the city, I don't know what will wake them." [12]

By June 2007, the number of people filing claims against the city, regarding exposure to Ground Zero toxins, reached 10,000. [48] Attorney David Worby is leading a class action lawsuit representing 8,000 people. [73] By September 2007, the number of plaintiffs in the case reached 10,000. "I started this suit on behalf of one cop that got sick." He continued, "Nobody would touch the case with a 10-foot pole because it was considered unpatriotic to say anything against the cleanup or the EPA. [51]

In 2008, the lead researcher of a New York State Department of Health study informed The New York Post of a study documenting at least 204 deaths of rescue and recovery workers since September 11, 2001. The researchers for the study confirmed 98 deaths with death certificates. The researchers showed that 77 persons died of illnesses, including 55 from lung and various other cancers. Kitty Gelberg, New York state Bureau of Occupational Health's chief epidemiologist said, "We're not saying they are all World Trade Center related we're just saying this is what people are dying from." Many of the 55 responders who died from cancer had cancer before September 11, 2001, but most of the cancer patients developed the disease afterward. [74]

The 98 deaths up to 2008 included:

  • 55 cancers
  • 21 traumatic injuries (motor-vehicle crashes, gunshots and five homicides, including four cops killed in the line of duty)
  • 12 heart disease, including 10 heart attacks
  • 2 sarcoidosis
  • 1 polyneuropathy (neorological disorder)
  • 1 pneumonia
  • 1 granuloma pneumonitis
  • 1 alcoholism
  • 1 amyloidosis (bone marrow disorder)
  • 1 kidney disease [74]

First responders

In particular, first responders, New York Police Department and Fire Department of New York members that reported to Ground Zero, have asserted that they are victims of diseases associated with the toxic cloud from the pulverized buildings and equipment. NYPD Detective James Zadroga, 34, was the first 9/11 responder whose 2006 death was directly linked with toxic Ground Zero substances. [31] Gerard Breton, a pathologist of the Ocean County, New Jersey medical examiner's office (which conducted an autopsy), reported that "It is felt with a reasonable degree of medical certainty that the cause of death in this case was directly related to the 9/11 incident." [10] [75] In addition to first responders that responded to the initial attack on the World Trade Center many assisted during recovery operations.

In 2017, 24 members of the NYPD died of cancer linked to toxins from the terrorist attack. In the first five months of 2018, another 24 members of the NYPD died of the same cause. [76]

Examples of health issues

Cesar Borja, a veteran of the NYPD, died, falling ill from lung disease. He had spent 16-hour days at the smoldering wreckage of Ground Zero. [77] Detective Robert Williamson, 46, died from pancreatic and lung cancer on May 13, 2007. He worked for 16-hour days, without taking days off, in performing recovery work at the Ground Zero site. After the clean up effort, he was among individuals that lobbied Governor George Pataki to sign a bill permitting retirees suffering from Ground Zero illnesses to have their illnesses reclassified and to receive additional pension benefits. His family and union believe that his cancers were directly caused by exposure to Ground Zero dust at the World Trade Center site. [78] [79] Twenty year veteran of the NYPD, Officer Kevin Hawkins, 41, died in May 2007 from kidney cancer, soon after filing for a Ground Zero disability pension. He had worked two months at the Ground Zero site. [80]

On September 3, 2007, NYPD Officer Frank Macri died of lung cancer that spread throughout his body, including to his spine. [81] Macri's lungs were filled with dust when the towers collapsed and he later spent two months working on the site. The long hours on the site gave him vomiting spells and he was diagnosed with an already rapidly progressing stage four cancer only one year after the attack, despite being a non-smoker and cancer free before the attacks. [82] In 2011, a lower court ruled that 9/11 toxins were the likely cause of Macri's death. [83] In 2012, the New York Supreme Court ruled that Macri's widow is entitled to line-of-duty death benefits of his full salary. [84] On December 12, 2017, NYPD Captain Douglas Greenwood took his own life after a long battle with lung disease, brought on by deadly chemicals in the air while working alongside other officers at Ground Zero. The pain he suffered over the years became too much to manage, causing him to take his own life by shooting himself in the chest near his home in Suffolk County, New York. [85]

General list of deceased due to health effects


Surviving first responders and their advocates are asserting that their illnesses have resulted from exposure to toxins at Ground Zero. The Patrolmen's Benevolent Association of the City of New York (PBA) filed a lawsuit to secure benefits for Officer Christopher Hynes, 36. In March 2004 he was diagnosed as having sarcoidosis. However, the NYPD has refused to bestow line-of-duty injury status to him. Hynes had worked for 111 hours at Ground Zero and its vicinity. He claims that he was never given a proper respirator for his work at Ground Zero. He has had difficulty in paying medical bills because of the denial of line-of-duty status. One medical provider sued him for $3,094 for medical bills. The provider eventually settled out of court for $1,625. The PBA noted that firefighters, by contrast, have been given line-of-duty status for their injuries. [138] [139]

Various volunteers

Hundreds of volunteer firefighters, construction workers, health professionals, clergy, and other individuals descended upon the scene in the days immediately following the attacks. These individuals volunteered directly at the Ground Zero site or cared for traumatized responders. Among individuals in the latter group, newspaper accounts have cited South Carolinian Episcopal nun, Sister Cindy Mahoney's death as a fatality of Ground Zero illness. Mahoney spent several months attending to first responders' spiritual needs. Two weeks prior to her death, she was cut off from her insurance. She choked to death on November 1, 2006, following five years of lung troubles. [11] [12] [140] [72] [141]

Sen. Hillary Clinton on Sister Mahoney and Ground Zero illness: "We know that so many are now suffering health effects from breathing the toxic air at Ground Zero … Yet there are still some who doubt the link. By raising attention to her own devastating illness, Sister Mahoney will continue as she did in life, to help those affected by 9/11." [140]

Communication workers

Communications recovery worker Mark DeBiase, aged 41, died on April 9, 2006, from a Ground Zero illness. He worked without protective gear for restoring communications at the site. "DeBiase's work was so crucial in emergency workers to communicate that he was shuttled between locations in a military helicopter," according to his father, Angelo DeBiase. [12]

Janitorial workers

Manuel Checo is one of many janitors that performed cleanup work who now suffer from World Trade Center cough. He spent six months at the site. Compounding janitorial workers' troubles, three-quarters of them lack health insurance. [1] [142]

Financial district personnel

Civil rights attorney Felicia Dunn-Jones, 42, died February 10, 2002, from sarcoidosis. The city's chief medical examiner belatedly attributed her death to her being engulfed in the dust cloud from the collapse of the Twin Towers, one block from her office. [143] [144]

Mayor Rudy Giuliani acted quickly to "reopen Wall Street." The Wall Street area reopened for business on September 17.

Educators and students

Students and staff at Stuyvesant High School returned to the school which lies within one-third of a mile north of the World Trade Center site, while fires were still burning at Ground Zero. Alumni are circulating a petition for greater attention to health problems related to the Ground Zero air. [145] [146] There is a debate over whether the 2002 Class President Amit Friedlander's developing cancer is related to Ground Zero air.

In addition, the students and staff members at the Murry Bergtraum High School returned to the building a couple of days after the attack, with the air system in the school severely affected and damaged from the debris and dust from the World Trade Center site (the school is three-quarters of a mile east of the site). Several teachers, particularly from the business department, and students have developed asthma and other breathing problems because of the lack of unpolluted air and the failure to clean the school's central air system thoroughly years after the attack.

Welcome to the VCF

Serving the 9/11 Community for Decades to Come

The September 11th Victim Compensation Fund (VCF) provides compensation to individuals (or a personal representative of a deceased individual) who were present at the World Trade Center or the surrounding New York City Exposure Zone the Pentagon crash site and the Shanksville, Pennsylvania crash site, at some point between September 11, 2001, and May 30, 2002, and who have since been diagnosed with a 9/11-related illness. The VCF is not limited to first responders. Compensation is also available to those who worked or volunteered in construction, clean-up, and debris removal as well as people who lived, worked, or went to school in the exposure zone.

Be sure to visit this website often for VCF news, program updates, and reporting answers to frequently asked questions access to forms and resources step-by-step guides designed to make the process easier for claimants and everything needed to register, file, and monitor the status of a claim.

The signing of the “Never Forget the Heroes, James Zadroga, Ray Pfeifer, and Luis Alvarez Permanent Authorization of the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund Act” in July 2019, fully funded the VCF to pay all eligible claims and extended the claim filing deadline to October 1, 2090. The enactment of this new law is a testament to the responders, survivors, and advocates who worked tirelessly to secure its passage, and in turn, our ability to continue our vital work.

Over the years, the VCF has earned a reputation for being faithful to our statute, fair to our claimants, and defensible to the taxpayers. As we look to the future, we will continue serving the 9/11 community as trusted administrators of this funding, ensuring that it is properly directed to its intended use for decades to come.

9/11 to today: Ways we have changed

The terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001 set in motion events that would change the course of life in the U.S. and around the world.

On that day, 2,996 people died in, and around, the World Trade Center in New York City, the Pentagon in Arlington, Virginia, and on a commercial airplane that crashed in Shanksville, Pennsylvania. In response, President George W. Bush signed the USA Patriot Act, ramping up domestic and border security, and expanding surveillance efforts in the name of national security.

The United States and its allies escalated operations in Afghanistan to root out the people responsible for the attacks. In airports, travelers underwent greater scrutiny, and a debate raged throughout the country over how much liberty should be sacrificed in the name of security.

On television, networks looped footage of the collapsing Twin Towers until public outcry demanded greater sensitivity to trauma. People of color, especially Muslim Americans, began to file a rising number of complaints of racially and religiously motivated discrimination, abuse and attacks. That day’s legacy lives on in U.S. foreign and domestic policy, and it has shaped generations of people, how they see the world and themselves.

Below is a short list illustrating how much the world has — and has not — changed since 9/11.

Life in Afghanistan

In the wake of the attacks, the U.S. embarked on the longest military campaign in its history in an effort to break the Taliban’s grip on Afghanistan. The conflict, which has been ongoing since October of 2001, has claimed about 140,000 Afghan lives, 2,400 U.S. military lives, and the lives of 4,000 U.S. contractors, as of November 2018.

The U.N. estimates more than 3,800 Afghan civilians were killed in the first half of 2019. Another U.N. report found U.S. and Afghan forces were responsible for more civilian deaths in Afghanistan in the first three months of 2019 than the Taliban and other militants.

The Taliban has also ramped up attacks in recent weeks, which killed both civilians and U.S. soldiers, as the group got closer to a peace deal with the U.S. Those attacks prompted President Donald Trump to call off a meeting with Taliban leaders and end negotiations.

The U.S. presence in Afghanistan has helped to bring stability to some parts of the country, but Afghanistan remains on the brink of failed status. Yet there has been some improvement in quality of life since the war. The infant mortality rate for children under 5 has steadily decreased from 126 deaths per 1,000 live births in 2001 to 67.9 deaths per 1,000 live births in 2017, according to UNICEF. (By comparison, the U.S. infant mortality rate was 6.6 deaths per 1,000 live births in 2017.)

Data doesn’t exist on how many children were in formal schools during the Taliban’s reign, but UNICEF reports the figure was likely “almost zero” due to the Taliban’s education bans. Today, about 4.7 million children ages 7 to 17 attend formal school in Afghanistan, the agency said. Another 3.7 million, or 43 percent of the school-age population, do not attend school.

Oil prices

Crude oil prices surged after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks in the United States. Prices have dropped back down, in part thanks to fracking, but are still more than twice as costly as in 2001, when crude oil cost around $22 per barrel. A decade later, that price quadrupled to $95.73 — the highest on record since 1860. As of September 2019, crude is hovering around $57 per barrel.

Anti-Muslim violence in the U.S.

Half of U.S. Muslims say they find it more difficult to live in the U.S. since the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, according to Pew Research Center surveys from 2017. Acts of violence against Muslims broke out immediately following 9/11, and have been prevalent ever since.

Four days after the attacks, Balbir Singh Sodhi, a Sikh-American man, was shot and killed in Mesa, Arizona. The gunman wrongly assumed Sodhi was Muslim because he wore a turban. In 2001, the FBI recorded 93 anti-Muslim assaults — a number that was not eclipsed until 2016, when the bureau recorded 127 such incidents.

In one of the most publicized cases, a man murdered three Muslims in Chapel Hill, North Carolina in 2015. The victims’ family said the man was motivated by anti-Islamic bigotry. He pleaded guilty in June 2019 and is facing life in prison without parole.

Anti-Muslim violence is not confined to the U.S. In March of this year, a man armed with semi-automatic rifles and shotguns stormed two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand, killing 51 worshippers and injuring 49 others. The gunman had posted a 74-page racist, anti-immigrant screed online prior to the shooting, and said he drew inspiration from far-right extremist Anders Behring Breivik, who killed 77 people in Norway in 2011.

European countries have also seen a rise in support for far-right, anti-immigrant politicians amid an influx in migrants from Africa and Syria, many of whom are Muslim.

Changes to air travel and safety

The days after Sept. 11 saw the rise of enhanced aviation security. To deliver on that demand, the Transportation Security Administration formed in November 2001, eventually receiving its first full-year budget of $4.8 billion in 2003 — an amount that grew to nearly $7.8 billion by fiscal year 2020.

That agency transformed the way Americans flew. Only 5 percent of checked bags were screened before 9/11, whereas all are screened for dangerous materials today. While air travel has seen growth since 9/11 overall, the industry suffered immediately after the attacks. In 2002, one out of six Americans said they reduced air travel following 9/11.

Rise in 9/11-related illnesses

Illnesses linked to the attacks, especially against the World Trade Towers, including respiratory and digestive diseases, cancers, post-traumatic stress disorder and more, have emerged over the nearly two decades since 9/11.

Earlier this year, comedian Jon Stewart drew attention to the plight of 9/11 first responders whose compensation fund was running out of money. At a Congressional hearing Stewart told lawmakers they “should be ashamed” of themselves for not extending the fund. Weeks later, Congress approved funding through 2092.

To better track and treat a growing number of people who report symptoms tied to that day, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention established the World Trade Center Health Program in 2011. Since then, 97,686 people have enrolled, and of those, 2,448 have died. Most served as responders who pitched in for rescue and recovery efforts, and more than half are between ages 45 and 64. And despite the program’s name, it also screens and helps treat first responders and survivors from the Pentagon and Shanksville, Pennsylvania, crash site.

Changes in the global economy

While the U.S. GDP, measured by purchasing power parity, doubled from $10.6 trillion in 2001 to $20.49 trillion in 2018, China’s and India’s economic growth has exploded during that period. China has risen to No. 1 in the world with a GDP at purchasing power parity of $25.36 trillion in 2018, up from $4.1 trillion in 2001. And India’s GDP purchasing power parity has risen from about $2.2 billion in 2001 to $10.49 trillion in 2018, ranking it No. 3 behind the U.S. As a 28-nation bloc, the European Union, which suffered a collapse in 2008 along with the U.S., now has a GDP purchasing power parity of $22 trillion.

As China’s economy grew, and since Trump entered office, the U.S. has begun using hardball tactics to reassert its dominance as an economic powerhouse. Last year, the Trump administration began imposing tariffs on billions of dollars worth of Chinese goods in 2018, saying that America needed to fight China’s unfair trade practices. Beijing responded in kind, and over the months, the countries have slugged it out, issuing sanctions tit for tat. The ensuing trade war continues today with more than two-thirds of the consumer goods the U.S. imports from China facing higher taxes.

Above: The rubble of the World Trade Center smoulders following a terrorist attack September 11, 2001 in New York. Photo by Porter Gifford/Corbis via Getty Images

(Between 10:10 a.m. and 10:35 a.m.) September 11, 2001: US Military’s Force Protection Level Is Raised

US military installations are placed on the highest state of alert, known as Force Protection Condition Delta (FPCON Delta), in response to the terrorist attacks in New York and at the Pentagon. The raised threat level applies to every US military installation across the country and around the world, and every member of the US armed forces. [Associated Press, 9/11/2001 US Department of Defense, 9/11/2001 New York Times, 9/12/2001] Measures that are taken once FPCON Delta has been declared include placing more guards on duty at military installations, having all vehicles on installations identified, and having all personnel positively identified. Additionally, all suitcases, briefcases, and packages brought into an installation must be searched. [Slate, 9/12/2001]
Rumsfeld and Myers Decide to Raise the FPCON - The decision to raise the force protection condition is apparently made by Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld and/or acting Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Richard Myers. Rumsfeld will tell the 9/11 Commission that after he arrives at the Pentagon’s National Military Command Center (NMCC) (see (10:30 a.m.) September 11, 2001), he and Myers “discussed, and I recommended… increasing the force protection level.” [9/11 Commission, 3/23/2004 ] Myers will later write that after he arrives at the NMCC (see (9:58 a.m.) September 11, 2001), he “recommended that all American military commands and units worldwide go to [FPCON] Delta.” He will add: “Terrorists had staged major attacks in New York and Washington. Although we did not yet have reliable intelligence on when and where they would strike next, it seemed likely that they would.” [Myers and McConnell, 2009, pp. 153] But White House counterterrorism chief Richard Clarke will write that he gave the instruction to raise the force protection condition, at around 9:30 a.m. (see (9:29 a.m.) September 11, 2001). [Clarke, 2004, pp. 5-6]
Conflicting Times Are Given for the Raising of the FPCON - The exact time at which the force protection condition is raised is unclear. CNN’s Barbara Starr will report that “all US military forces [are] ordered to Condition Delta” at 10:10 a.m. [CNN, 9/4/2002] However, other evidence indicates the force protection condition is raised at a later time, around 10:35 a.m. Rumsfeld only enters the NMCC at about 10:30 a.m., indicating it is raised after that time. [9/11 Commission, 7/24/2004, pp. 43-44] And at 10:38 a.m., after Vice President Dick Cheney asks him on the air threat conference call if US forces are on “heightened alert,” Rumsfeld will reply, “Yes,” and say they are at FPCON Delta. [US Department of Defense, 9/11/2001 ]
Some Areas Are Already at FPCON Delta - Although the entire US military is now under the same FPCON level, usually, different locations can have different FPCON levels. [Slate, 9/12/2001] US forces in some parts of the world, particularly the Middle East and the Persian Gulf region, are in fact already at FPCON Delta. [New York Times, 9/12/2001] (The force protection condition was raised in those areas in late June, after intelligence reports suggested that terrorists might attack American military or civilian targets in the region (see June 21, 2001). [Los Angeles Times, 6/23/2001 National Public Radio, 5/23/2002 9/11 Commission, 7/24/2004, pp. 257] ) Shortly after the force protection condition is raised, Rumsfeld will order that the defense readiness condition also be raised (see (10:43 a.m.-10:52 a.m.) September 11, 2001). [US Department of Defense, 9/11/2001 9/11 Commission, 7/24/2004, pp. 326, 554]
There Are Five Possible Force Protection Conditions - The force protection condition is a “chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff-approved standard for identification of, and recommended responses to, terrorist threats against US personnel and facilities,” according to the Department of Defense. [US Department of Defense, 11/8/2010 ] It was created in June 2001 and replaced the “terrorist threat condition,” or “Threatcon.” [Los Angeles Times, 1/22/2002] There are five possible force protection conditions. The lowest, FPCON Normal, means no threat of terrorist activity is present. The other conditions are Alpha, Bravo, Charlie, up to the highest, FPCON Delta, which means a terrorist attack has occurred or intelligence has been received indicating that action against a specific location is likely. [Associated Press, 9/11/2001 Slate, 9/12/2001]

On Tuesday, September 11, 2001, the opening of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) was delayed after the first plane crashed into the World Trade Center's North Tower, and trading for the day was canceled after the second plane crashed into the South Tower. NASDAQ also canceled trading. The New York Stock Exchange Building was then evacuated as well as nearly all banks and financial institutions on Wall Street and in many cities across the country. The London Stock Exchange and other stock exchanges around the world were also closed down and evacuated in fear of follow-up terrorist attacks. The New York Stock Exchange remained closed until the following Monday. This was the third time in history that the NYSE experienced prolonged closure, the first time being in the early months of World War I [2] [3] and the second being March 1933 during the Great Depression. Trading on the United States bond market also ceased the leading government bond trader, Cantor Fitzgerald, was based in the World Trade Center. [4] The New York Mercantile Exchange was also closed for a week after the attacks. [5]

The Federal Reserve issued a statement, saying it was "open and operating. The discount window is available to meet liquidity needs." [6] The Federal Reserve added $100 billion in liquidity per day, during the three days following the attack, to help avert a financial crisis. [5] Federal Reserve Governor Roger W. Ferguson Jr. has described in detail this and the other actions that the Fed undertook to maintain a stable economy and offset potential disruptions arising in the financial system. [7]

Gold prices spiked upwards, from $215.50 to $287 an ounce in London trading. [4] Oil prices also spiked upwards. [8] Gas prices in the United States also briefly shot up, though the spike in prices lasted only about one week. [5]

Currency trading continued, with the United States dollar falling sharply against the Euro, British pound, and Japanese yen. [4] The next day, European stock markets fell sharply, including declines of 4.6% in Spain, 8.5% in Germany, [4] and 5.7% on the London Stock Exchange. [9] Stocks in the Latin American markets also plunged, with a 9.2% drop in Brazil, 5.2% drop in Argentina, and 5.6% decline in Mexico, before trading was halted. [4]

In international and domestic markets, stocks of companies in some sectors were hit particularly hard. Travel and entertainment stocks fell, while communications, pharmaceutical and military/defense stocks rose. Online travel agencies particularly suffered, as they cater to leisure travel.

Insurance Edit

Insurance losses due to 9/11 were more than one and a half times greater than what was previously the largest disaster (Hurricane Andrew) in terms of losses. The losses included business interruption ($11.0 billion), property ($9.6 billion), liability ($7.5 billion), workers compensation ($1.8 billion), and others ($2.5 billion). The firms with the largest losses included Berkshire Hathaway, Lloyd's, Swiss Re, and Munich Re, all of which are reinsurers, with more than $2 billion in losses for each. [10] Shares of major reinsurers, including Swiss Re and Baloise Insurance Group dropped by more than 10%, while shares of Swiss Life dropped 7.8%. [11] Although the insurance industry held reserves that covered the 9/11 attacks, insurance companies were reluctant to continue providing coverage for future terrorist attacks. Only a few insurers continue to offer such coverage.

Airlines and aviation Edit

Flights were grounded in various places across the United States and Canada that did not necessarily have the operational support in place, such as dedicated ground crews. A large number of transatlantic flights landed in Gander, Newfoundland and in Halifax, Nova Scotia, with the logistics handled by Transport Canada in Operation Yellow Ribbon. To help with immediate needs for victims' families, United Airlines and American Airlines both provided initial payments of $25,000. [12] The airlines were also required to refund ticket purchases for anyone unable to fly. [12]

The 9/11 attacks compounded financial troubles that the airline industry already was experiencing before the attacks. Share prices of airlines and airplane manufacturers plummeted after the attacks. Midway Airlines, already on the brink of bankruptcy, shut down operations almost immediately afterwards. Swissair, unable to make payments to creditors on its large debt was grounded on 2 October 2001 and later liquidated. [13] Other airlines were threatened with bankruptcy, and tens of thousands of layoffs were announced in the week following the attacks. To help the industry, the federal government provided an aid package to the industry, including $10 billion in loan guarantees, along with $5 billion for short-term assistance. [1]

The reduction on air travel demand caused by the attack is also seen as a contributory reason to the retirement of the only supersonic aircraft in service at the time, Concorde. [14]

Tourism Edit

Tourism in New York City plummeted, causing massive losses in a sector which employed 280,000 people and generated $25 billion per year. In the week following the attack, hotel occupancy fell below 40%, and 3,000 employees were laid off. Tourism, hotel occupancy and air travel also fell drastically across the nation. [ citation needed ] The reluctance to fly may have been due to increased fear of a repeat attack. Suzanne Thompson, Professor of Psychology at Pomona College, conducted interviews of 501 people who were not direct victims of 9/11. From this, she concluded that "Most participants felt more distress (65 percent) and a stronger fear of flying (55 percent) immediately after the event than they did before the attacks." [15]

Security Edit

Since the 9/11 attacks, substantial resources have been put towards improving security, in the areas of homeland security, national defense, and in the private sector. [5] [16]

In New York City, approximately 430,000 jobs were lost and there were $2.8 billion in lost wages over the three months following the 9/11 attacks. The economic effects were mainly focused on the city's export economy sectors. [17] The GDP for New York City was estimated to have declined by $30.3 billion over the last three months of 2001 and all of 2002. The Federal government provided $11.2 billion in immediate assistance to the Government of New York City in September 2001, and $10.5 billion in early 2002 for economic development and infrastructure needs. [18]

The 9/11 attacks also had great impact on small businesses in Lower Manhattan, located near the World Trade Center. Approximately 18,000 small businesses were destroyed or displaced after the attacks. The Small Business Administration provided loans as assistance, while Community Development Block Grants and Economic Injury Disaster Loans were other also used by the Federal Government to provide assistance to small business affected by the 9/11 attacks. [18]


Speaking at a press conference at 11:02 a.m. on the morning of the attacks, Mayor Rudy Giuliani told New Yorkers: "If you are south of Canal Street, get out. Walk slowly and carefully. If you can't figure what else to do, just walk north." [2] The neighborhood was covered in dust and debris, and electrical failures caused traffic light outages. Emergency vehicles were given priority to respond to ongoing fires, building collapses, and expected mass casualties. Over a million workers and residents south of Canal Street evacuated, and police stopped pedestrians from entering lower Manhattan. With subways shut down, vehicle traffic restricted, and tunnels closed, they mainly fled on foot, pouring over bridges and ferries to Brooklyn and New Jersey. [2]

On September 12, vehicle traffic was banned south of 14th Street, subway stations south of Canal Street were bypassed, and pedestrians were not permitted below Chambers Street. Vehicle traffic below Canal Street was not allowed until October 13. [2]

The New York Stock Exchange did not open on September 11 even as CNBC showed futures numbers early in the day. As Wall Street was covered in debris from the World Trade Center and suffered infrastructure damage, it remained closed until September 17.

Bridges and tunnels

For at least a full day after the attacks, bridges and tunnels to Manhattan were closed to non-emergency traffic in both directions. Among other things, this interrupted scheduled deliveries of food and other perishables, leading to shortages in restaurants. From September 27, 2001, one-occupant cars were banned from crossing into Lower Manhattan from Midtown on weekday mornings in an effort to relieve some of the crush of traffic in the city (the morning rush hour lasts from 5:30 a.m. to noon), caused largely by the increased security measures and closure of major vehicle and transit crossings.

Mass transit

New York City Subway

The tracks and stations under the WTC were shut down within minutes of the first plane crash. All remaining New York City Subway service was suspended from 10:20 a.m. to 12:48 p.m. [2] Immediately after the attacks and more so after the collapses of the Twin Towers, many trains running in Lower Manhattan lost power and had to be evacuated through the tunnels. Some trains had power but the signals did not, requiring special operating procedures to ensure safety.

The IRT Broadway–Seventh Avenue Line, which ran below the World Trade Center between Chambers Street and Rector Street, was the most crippled. This section of the tunnel, including Cortlandt Street station (located directly underneath the World Trade Center), was badly damaged, and had to be rebuilt. Service was immediately suspended south of Chambers Street and then cut back to 14th Street. There was also subsequent flooding on the line south of 34th Street–Penn Station. After the flood was cleaned up, express service was able to resume on September 17 with 1 trains running between Van Cortlandt Park–242nd Street and 14th Street, making local stops north of and express stops south of 96th Street, while 2 and 3 trains made all stops in Manhattan (but bypassed all stations between Canal Street and Fulton Street until October 1). 1/9 skip-stop service was suspended.

After a few switching delays at 96th Street, service was changed on September 19. The 1 train resumed local service in Manhattan, but was extended to New Lots Avenue in Brooklyn (switching onto the express tracks at Chambers Street) to replace the 3, which now terminated at 14th Street as an express. The 2 train continued to make local stops in Manhattan and service between Chambers Street and South Ferry as well as skip-stop service remained suspended. Normal service on all four trains was restored September 15, 2002, but Cortlandt Street remained closed until September 8, 2018. [3]

Service on the BMT Broadway Line was also disrupted because the tracks from the Montague Street Tunnel run adjacent to the World Trade Center and there were concerns that train movements could cause unsafe settling of the debris pile. Cortlandt Street station, which sits under Church Street, sustained significant damage in the collapse of the towers. It was closed until September 15, 2002 for removal of debris, structural repairs, and restoration of the track beds, which had suffered flood damage in the aftermath of the collapse. Starting September 17, 2001, N and R service was suspended and respectively replaced by the M (which was extended to Coney Island–Stillwell Avenue via the BMT Montague Street Tunnel, BMT Fourth Avenue Line, and BMT Sea Beach Line) and the J (also extended via Fourth Avenue to Bay Ridge–95th Street). In Queens, the Q replaced the R while the W replaced the N. All service on the BMT Broadway Line ran local north of Canal Street except for the <Q>, which ran normally from 57th Street to Brighton Beach via Broadway and Brighton Express. J/Z skip-stop service was suspended at this time. Normal service on all seven trains resumed on October 28.

The only subway line running between Midtown and Lower Manhattan was the IRT Lexington Avenue Line, which was overcrowded before the attacks and at crush density until the BMT Broadway Line reopened. Wall Street was closed until September 21.

The IND Eighth Avenue Line, which has a stub terminal serving the E train under Five World Trade Center, was undamaged, but covered in soot. E trains were extended to Euclid Avenue, Brooklyn, replacing the then suspended C train (the A and D trains replaced it as the local north of 59th Street–Columbus Circle on nights and weekends, respectively. The B train, which ran normally from 145th Street or Bedford Park Boulevard to 34th Street–Herald Square via Central Park West Local, also replaced C trains on weekdays). Service was cut back to Canal Street when C service resumed on September 21, but Chambers Street and Broadway–Nassau Street remained closed until October 1. World Trade Center remained closed until January 2002.

There were no reported casualties on the subway or loss of train cars, but an MCI coach bus was destroyed. Another bus was damaged, but repaired and is back in normal service with a special commemoration livery.

PATH started evacuating passengers from its Manhattan trains and tracks within minutes of the first plane crash. [2] The PATH station at World Trade Center was heavily damaged (a train parked in the station was crushed by debris and was removed during the excavation process in January 2002) and all service there was suspended. For several hours, PATH did not run any trains to Manhattan, but was able to restore service on the Uptown Hudson Tubes to 33rd Street by the afternoon. [2] Exchange Place was unusable since the switch configuration at the time required all trains to continue to World Trade Center. As a result, PATH ran a modified service: Hoboken-Journal Square, Hoboken-33rd Street, and Newark-33rd Street. Exchange Place reopened with modifications on June 29, 2003 a temporary station replacing World Trade Center opened on November 23.


Liberty Water Taxi and NY Waterway had a ferry terminal at the World Financial Center. As the area around the terminal was in the restricted zone, NY Waterway suspended service to the terminal with alternate service going to Midtown and Wall Street and Liberty Water Taxi service was suspended. Free ad-hoc ferry service to New Jersey, Brooklyn, and Queens began by evening, with about half a million evacuees transported by Circle Line Tours, NY Waterway, privately owned dining boats, tug boats, and at least one fire boat. [2]


MTA buses were temporarily suspended south of Canal Street, and MTA and NJ Transit buses were re-routed to serve passengers arriving in Brooklyn and New Jersey by walking and taking ferries out of Manhattan.

Intercity transit

The Port Authority Bus Terminal was closed until September 13. Amtrak suspended all of its rail service nationwide until 6pm. Greyhound Bus Lines cancelled its bus service in the Northeast, but was running normally by September 13. [2]

The entire airspaces of the United States and Canada [4] were closed ("ground stop") by order of FAA National Operations Manager Ben Sliney (who was working his first day in that position) [5] except for military, police, and medical flights. The unprecedented implementation of Security Control of Air Traffic and Air Navigation Aids (SCATANA) was the first unplanned closure in the U.S. military exercises known as Operation Skyshield had temporarily closed the airspace in the early 1960s. Domestic planes were diverted to the nearest available airport. All non-military flights needed specific approval from the United States Air Force and the FAA. [ citation needed ] There were only a few dozen private aircraft which received approvals in that time period. Civil Air Patrol's aerial photography unit was the earliest non-military flight granted approval. United Airlines cancelled all flights worldwide temporarily. Grounded passengers and planes were searched for security threats. Amtrak was closed until 6pm on September 11, but by September 13 it had increased capacity 30% to deal with an influx of stranded plane passengers. [2] President George W. Bush was transported to a secure location via Air Force One.

Many incoming international flights were diverted to Atlantic Canada to avoid proximity to potential targets in the US and large cities in Canada. Some international flights that departed from South America were diverted to Mexico, however its airspace was not shut down. On Thursday night, the New York area airports (JFK, LaGuardia, and Newark) were closed again and reopened the next morning. The only traffic from LaGuardia during the closure was a single C-9C government VIP jet, departing at approximately 5:15 p.m. on the 12th.

Civilian air traffic was allowed to resume on September 13, 2001, with stricter airport security checks, disallowing for example the box cutting knives that were used by the hijackers. (Reinforcement of cockpit doors began in October 2001, and was required for larger airlines by 2003. [6] ) First, stranded planes were allowed to fly to their intended destinations, then limited service resumed. The backlog of delayed passengers took several days to clear.

Due to a translation error, controllers believed Korean Air Flight 85 might have been hijacked. Canadian Prime Minister Jean Chrétien and U.S. authorities ordered the United States Air Force to surround the plane and force it to land in Whitehorse, Yukon and to shoot down the plane if the pilots did not cooperate. Alaska Governor Tony Knowles ordered the evacuation of large hotels and government buildings in Anchorage. Also in Alaska at nearby Valdez, the U.S. Coast Guard ordered all tankers filling up with oil to head out to sea. Canadian officials evacuated all schools and large buildings in Whitehorse before the plane landed safely. [7] [8] [9] [10]

Many businesses across the United States closed after the intentional nature of the events became clear, and many national landmarks and financial district skyscrapers were evacuated out of fear of further attacks.

United States

    in New York City
  • Most skyscrapers in New York City (including the Chrysler Building and Empire State Building, which was evacuated several times on September 11 and after due to false reports of potential threats), Chicago (including Sears Tower) [11] and Philadelphia
  • The Washington Monument in Washington, D.C.
  • The Statue of Liberty, Ellis Island and ferries to both in and out of New York City
  • All state capitols and many government buildings surrounding the capitols [citation needed]
  • Many landmarks in the United States, including the Mall of America outside of Minneapolis, Minnesota and the Space Needle and Columbia Center in Seattle, Washington
  • All federal buildings in Washington, D.C., including the White House, the United States Capitol, the United States Supreme Court Building and Blair House. Across the country, approximately one million federal workers were sent home
  • The D.C. Department of Motor Vehicles (although all other D.C. government offices remained open) [12]
  • The United States Patent and Trademark Office [13] , including all field centers and the agency's headquarters in Washington, D.C. [14]
  • Resorts and vacation spots including:
      and Knotts Berry Farm (only on September 11) [11] (only on September 11)
  • International

    In an atmosphere reminiscent of the assassination of John F. Kennedy in 1963, everyday life around the world came to a standstill in the days after the September 11 attacks. For this reason, as well as for reasons of perceived threat associated with large gatherings, many events were postponed or cancelled. Other events were also cancelled, postponed, or modified:

    Airline Travel Since 9/11

    Today’s airline industry presents a different picture than it did prior to the events of September 11, 2001 (9/11), with more passengers flying low-cost carriers, fewer empty seats, and a smaller workforce.

    Airline passenger travel and capacity (measured in terms of available seats) fell drastically after the terrorist attacks of September 11th, when our national air space was temporarily closed. The numbers of airline passenger and seats remained low in subsequent months, but have recovered in the following years. Available seats have increased more slowly than air passenger travel, and have only recently reached the pre-9/11 peaks in contrast, air passenger travel reached its pre-9/11 peak in July 2004 and has continued to grow. Thus the aviation industry has accommodated passenger growth with few additional seats, which means fuller planes.

    At the same time that the industry was facing this large-scale drop and subsequent recovery in the number of passengers, there were shifts in the size of different segments of the industry. In particular, the low-cost carriers grew significantly and air fares decreased through this period.

    Network carriers responded to the pressures on the domestic market by reducing available seats and shifting some capacity to the international market. They also dramatically cut employment in order to reduce costs.

    Passengers Return

    In the August preceding 9/11, the airline industry experienced what was then a record high in the number of airline passengers for a given month when 65.4 million travelers took to the air. After 9/11, that number trailed off dramatically, and it took nearly 3 years, until July 2004, for the industry to match and finally surpass the pre 9/11 levels. But the number of available seats—an industry measure of capacity— in July 2004 was just 98.3 % of its August 2001 peak. By July 2005, the number of airline passengers had reached 71 million.

    Fewer Empty Seats

    In the comeback from post 9/11 lows, capacity has risen more slowly than growth in passenger numbers. Available seats hit a peak of 90.6 million in August 2001. But after 9/11, capacity dropped dramatically as airlines grounded planes and reduced flights to match falling demand. Only 67.5 million seats were available in September 2001. In July 2005, the number of available seats exceeded the pre 9/11 level for the first time at 91.1 million— an increase of about 0.6 percent compared with an increase of about 9.7 percent in passengers over the pre 9/11 high.

    Because the airlines have accommodated the surge in passengers with only a minimal increase in the number of seats, aircraft are flying with fewer empty seats.

    Fewer Employees

    Current employment levels for network and low-cost carriers 1 are 28% below July 2001 levels as many airlines strive to reduce costs. Employment for network and lowcost carriers stood at 534,767 in July 2001. 2 But 4 years later, in July 2005, employment had fallen 28 percent to 383,859. This drop was driven by a decline in employment by the network carriers compared to increased hiring by low-cost carriers. Network carrier employment fell by 34 percent, from 465,198 in July 2001 to 308,714 in July 2005. During this same time period, low-cost carrier employment increased by 8 percent—from 69,569 to 75,145.

    Market Changes

    One response U.S. network carriers made to the post 9/11 market conditions was to shift capacity from domestic to international markets. International service represented 12.0% of seats on network carriers in May 2001, increasing to 15.2 % in May 2005. 3 The shift of available seats toward the international market occurred as the network airlines were reacting to the rising dominance of low-cost carriers in the domestic marketplace. The low-cost carriers vigorously added capacity while the network airlines reduced domestic flight operations to reduce costs. Annual available seats on low-cost carriers increased by 24% 4 , from 182 million in 2000 to 226 million, in 2004, and passengers increased by 27%, from 124 million to 158 million, during the same period.

    At the same time there have been changes in the domestic aviation pricing structure reflecting the growing impact of low-cost carriers and other factors. Widely available, relatively inexpensive air fares have contributed to the increase in passenger travel. For example, the Air Travel Price Index (ATPI), which tracks changes in prices paid for airline tickets, showed in the first quarter of 2005 the lowest fare index of any January-to-March period since 1999.

    For More Information:

    Ken Notis
    U.S. Department of Transportation
    Research and Innovative Technology Administration
    Bureau of Transportation Statistics
    400 7th Street SW, Room 4125
    Washington, DC 20590
    Phone: 202-366-3576 Fax: 202-493-0568
    [email protected]

    1 Network and low-cost carriers do not include regional carriers. Network carriers are the traditional hub-and-spoke carriers.

    2 Employment at network carriers and low-cost carriers, based on data from RITA-BTS, OAI, monthly P-1(a) Form 41. Data are incomplete for regional and other carriers in 2001 and 2002. Regional and other carrier data for years when regional and other carrier data are complete is shown in the accompanying table for July 2003 through July 2005.

    Numerous films were cancelled that were in production, and many films were edited. The most common way of editing was to delete or obscure shots of the World Trade Center and events similar to the attacks. There were various reasons given for the alterations, including keeping material up-to-date, as a gesture of respect for those who died, and to avoid trauma for those emotionally affected by the attack. There are also many films which notably were not edited.

    In all, roughly 45 films were edited or postponed because of the 9/11 attacks. [1]

    Edited films Edit

    With the World Trade Center removed Edit

    • The teaser trailer for Spider-Man was removed from circulation, as it featured Spider-Man capturing a helicopter filled with criminals in a web spun between the twin towers. A poster with the World Trade Center reflecting in Spider-Man's eyes was also recalled. A shot of the World Trade Center was deleted from the film, but it can be found on the Sony Pictures Stock Footage website. Two scenes were added to the film in response to the attacks. In the first, a group of New Yorkers attack the Green Goblin over the Queensboro Bridge, with one saying “You mess with one of us, you mess with all of us”. The second, a scene of Spider-Man hanging onto a flagpole with a large American flag, was seen in later trailers and at the end of the film.
    • In the film Zoolander, theatrically released nearly three weeks after the attacks, the WTC was digitally deleted. In the 2016 Blu-ray release, the towers were reinserted. [2]
    • The WTC was removed from the poster for Sidewalks of New York, though the buildings were kept in the film. [3]
    • Shots of the WTC in Serendipity were digitally removed.
    • The 2002 film Men in Black II featured a climax that included the World Trade Center. The building was changed to the Statue of Liberty. [citation needed]
    • In the 2002 comedy film Mr. Deeds, the shots of the World Trade Center were partially seen. One was shot in the helicopter for the scene where Longfellow Deeds arrives in New York City, and one was shot in Upper West Side, which it shows the entire Manhattan. The towers were digitally removed in the scene where Longfellow Deeds and Chuck Cedar play tennis, which was shot in Roosevelt Island in spring 2001.
    • In the 2002 film Stuart Little 2, shots of the World Trade Center were digitally removed. [4]
    • Shots of the WTC in Kissing Jessica Stein were removed before its release. [5]
    • Scenes of the WTC were removed from People I Know, but it can be found on the DVD release in the deleted scenes featurette. [6]
    • When the 1998 movie Armageddon premiered on ABC around April 2002, the scene in which the World Trade Center gets hit by meteors and catches on fire was edited out because of its similarity to the September 11 attacks. [7]
    • The 2002 film Igby Goes Down has several shots of the WTC towers edited out.
    • The 1992 film Home Alone 2: Lost in New York features a scene atop the WTC, which was edited out on several television channels. However, as of Christmas 2018, the scene with the WTC was restored.
    • The 1976 film King Kong involved the title character climbing the World Trade Center, with its DVD at the time reflecting this scene from the original poster art. Paramount Home Video re-issued the film with a new image on the cover after the attacks, recalling the former cover from retail sale and repackaging the contents with the new cover.
    • In the 2002 horror film The Rats, the World Trade Center towers were digitally removed from the beginning where the rats cut the cables and causing the lights to go out from the Statue of Liberty in the night and the day. Also, it was originally set to be aired on September 11, 2001 (the same day of the attacks). After the incident, the film has been postponed for its 2002 release.
    • The 1994 movie Léon: The Professional had at least one scene with WTC Twin Towers in the background digitally altered to remove them.
    • 2000's The Watcher had its opening scene digitally altered to show 'The Freedom Tower' where WTC Towers 1 & 2 were originally depicted.

    With the World Trade Center added Edit

    Some filmmakers have added the World Trade Center to films and television series that are set during periods when the buildings were still standing.

    • The 2003 American miniseries Angels in America, set in 1985, had the WTC towers digitally re-inserted for historical accuracy.
    • The 2004 film Miracle, set in 1979 and 1980, has a digital World Trade Center on the New York City skyline. [8]
    • The 2004 sequel film Spider-Man 2, North Tower and WTC 7 are seen in night, and the picture of Spider-Man jumping behind the World Trade Center towers is seen where Harry says "Where are you?".
    • The 2005 film Munich shows a scene set in 1977 with the Twin Towers in the background.
    • The 2005 film Rent, set in 1989 and 1990, includes a shot of the World Trade Center.
    • The 2006 films World Trade Center and United 93, the 2009 film Diverted, and the 2017 film 9/11 take place on the day of the attacks and feature the buildings, with real footage of the second World Trade Center impact in 9/11.
    • 2006 and 2007 biography films about Mark David Chapman's murder of John Lennon on December 8, 1980 feature the World Trade Center. In The Killing of John Lennon, the WTC is seen while the footage spins from Statue of Liberty where Mark David Chapman arrives in New York City from Hawaii and set on December 5, 1980, although the towers were removed where Chapman dances with the woman in Brooklyn Bridge. In Chapter 27, the World Trade Center is seen on the beginning where Chapman rides in a taxi cab on Brooklyn Bridge, though the towers were removed from the sunset in New York City.
    • The 2008 film Madagascar: Escape 2 Africa contains a segment when the animals arrive in New York City, and the original World Trade Center twin towers are seen in the distance.
    • The 2008 film The Wackness concludes with a scene depicting the Twin Towers in 1994.
    • The 2009 film Watchmen, which takes place in 1985, features the twin towers in several of the scenes. Ironically the towers are depicted as two of the only buildings still standing after a scene featuring the destruction of New York City.
    • The 2010 film Remember Me, which has an ending that takes place on September 11, 2001, shows digital recreations of the World Trade Center towers in the last scene of the film.
    • The episode "Adrift" from the ABC series Lost added the World Trade Center in the second airing of the episode to establish the timeframe of the flashback.
    • The ABC series Life On Mars, with a storyline that took place in 1973, showed a digitally-inserted World Trade Center in several episodes.
    • The Fox series Fringe depicted an intact World Trade Center in a parallel universe. The buildings were revealed in the finale of season one. Season two explains that in the parallel universe, the 9/11 attacks resulted in damage to the White House instead of the towers.
    • The 2014 film A Most Violent Year set in 1981 shows the World Trade Center in the background of several shots.
    • On the 2015 Rogue Cut version of the 2014 film X-Men: Days of Future Past, The World Trade Center towers are seen and set in 1973 after Wolverine leaves to Manchester, New York.
    • The 2015 film The Walk takes place on August 7, 1974, detailing the life of Philippe Petit. The film was dedicated to the victims of the 9/11 attacks and features a digital depiction of the towers.
    • The 2016 sequel film X-Men: Apocalypse, the World Trade Center towers are seen, set in 1983.
    • The 2017 thriller film 2:22 takes place in 1986, seen at the beginning scene.
    • The 2019 biographicaldrama film about Fred Rogers and journalist Lloyd Vogel (a fictionalized version of profile writer Tom Junod), A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood, takes place in New York City and Pittsburgh in 1998. As an establishing shot, the film has the 1998 New York City skyline, including the Twin Towers, rendered in the style of the models seen in the opening of Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood.
    • The episode Peter and Lois' Wedding from Fox series Family Guy, the World Trade Center is seen throughout the episode and takes place in 1990s.

    Other changes Edit

    • In TV versions of the 1985 film Back to the Future, all terrorist references were removed and altered completely from several scenes. In the exterior Twin Pines Mall scene, where Marty McFly gets chased by the Libyans, the closer shots of the Libyans and Doc Brown's death scene were completely removed. In the scene where Marty writes a letter to 1955 Doc Brown at the cafe about the night that he went back in time, "by terrorists" was digitally erased from the letter: Marty's dialogue "Dear Dr. Brown, on the night that I go back in time, you will be shot by terrorists" was changed into "Dear Dr. Brown, on the night that I go back in time, you will be shot. Please—".
    • In the 2002 re-release of E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial, the dialogue "You're not going as a terrorist", spoken by the mother, was replaced with, "You're not going as a hippie." [9]
    • In the TV version of the 2000 film Meet the Parents that aired on ABC Family, the scene near the end in which Greg gets into an argument with the airline stewardess and his subsequent interrogation by an airline official removes all references to the fact that Greg mentioned the word "bomb" on the airplane.
    • The 1998 film Deep Impact portrays the wave that struck New York City crashing over and around the towers of the World Trade Center, which were the only buildings barely above water at the end of the sequence, surviving the wave. As a result of the attacks, some television broadcasts of the film were edited to remove the buildings. The tidal wave also incorrectly comes from the west from New Jersey, and not from the south, from the Atlantic Ocean.
    • The 2002 movie Collateral Damage originally had Colombian actress Sofía Vergara playing the role of an airplane hijacker. Following the attacks, the scene where Vergara would hijack a plane was cut from the film. The film's release was also delayed by four months due to it being about terrorism.
    • In the 2001 film Spy Game, the level of smoke shown following a bombing was reduced because of its similarity to the smoking WTC wreckage. [10]
    • A scene in The Time Machine, in which debris from the destroyed Moon crashes into a building, was edited due to its resemblance to the attacks. [11]
    • In some post-9/11 versions of the 1998 film The Siege, the World Trade Center towers were digitally removed from several shots of New York City.
    • The ending to the 2002 animated film Lilo & Stitch was changed from Stitch, Jumba, Pleakley, and Nani hijacking a Boeing 747 to chase down Captain Gantu through the streets of Honolulu, to the four taking Jumba's spaceship and chasing Gantu around Hawaii's mountains. The original ending was included on the special edition DVD. [12]
    • The 2002 film The Bourne Identity was extensively reshot due to the fear of the CIA as the antagonist being wrongly interpreted as anti-Americanism. Due to the insistence of Matt Damon and Doug Liman, the footage wasn't included. On the special edition DVD are descriptions of how and why the film was changed.
    • Early versions of the 2004 film The Incredibles featured a scene where a frustrated Mr. Incredible vents his emotions on an abandoned building, but ends up accidentally damaging a neighboring building as well. This was considered too reminiscent of the World Trade Center collapse, and was replaced with a scene where Mr. Incredible and Frozone rescue trapped civilians from a burning building. [13]
    • The 2000 film An Extremely Goofy Movie features a scene in which Max and Goofy save Tank from a tall burning and collapsing replica of the logo for ESPN's X Games this scene was cut after the attacks due to a resemblance to the fire and collapse of each tower. The original pre-9/11 VHS and DVD releases remain the only available version of the film for consumer purchase. It remains on international broadcasts, and that source is also used for the Netflix and Disney+ versions.
    • The 2001 movie Monsters, Inc. originally depicted a building exploding as part of a decontamination effort against human children, but was replaced with a plasma effect. The filmmakers described the decision to alter the film in the Blu-ray "round-table discussion" bonus feature. [14]
    • Although the 2002 film Maid in Manhattan began production in July 2001, principal photography took place on April 27, 2002 – June 6, 2002, and footage showing the World Trade Center towers was not used in the film.

    Delayed films Edit

    • The release of View from the Top was originally scheduled for Christmas 2001, but because the story revolves around a flight attendant on numerous planes, the release was pushed back to March 21, 2003.
    • The release of Arnold Schwarzenegger's Collateral Damage was postponed for four months. The film featured a terrorist bombing in front of an L.A. building. [15]
    • The release of Training Day was originally scheduled for September 21 but was then shifted two weeks to October 5 due to "a variety of reasons".
    • The 2002 version of The Time Machine was held back three months because of a scene where a meteor shower destroys New York City. This scene was also removed. [citation needed]
    • The film Big Trouble was postponed seven months because it involved a nuclear bomb being smuggled on board an aircraft. [15]
    • The 2002 action-comedy film Bad Company had its release date pushed back several months because the plot involved a criminal mastermind planning to detonate a bomb in the Grand Central Terminal.
    • The Jeremy Irons film The Fourth Angel opened in several European countries before the events of 9/11. The tragedy combined with the commercial failure of other terrorist-themed films such as Collateral Damage led to the delay of its wider release, including in the US and UK. It was finally issued directly to DVD in the US in 2003.

    Cancelled films Edit

    • A Jackie Chan film called Nosebleed, about a window washer on the WTC who foils a terrorist plot, was due to start filming on September 11, 2001. [16]Snopes questioned the suggestion that this was any kind of "narrow escape", pointing out the uncertain nature of film development and noting "it was almost certainly as part of a plan drawn up and abandoned long before September 2001". [17] planned to make a sequel to True Lies, but after the attacks, he canceled the project, saying that "terrorism is no longer something to be taken lightly."
    • There were plans to have a sequel to Forrest Gump, but after the attacks, Eric Roth, Robert Zemeckis, and Tom Hanks said that the story was no longer "relevant".

    Non-altered films Edit

    Some films released after 9/11 kept scenes of the World Trade Center in them.

    • For Vanilla Sky, director Cameron Crowe retained shots of the buildings in the final cut of the film, despite the producers asking for them to be cut. [18]
    • In Donnie Darko, which was released a month after the attacks, parts of a plane fall from the sky. It has been suggested that the darker themes of the film were responsible for its poor box office, [19] but it nonetheless went on to become a cult classic in the years following.
    • In the 2001 film Delivering Milo, World Trade Center is seen where Milo is at Ellis Island, while he rides in the boat. The film was released on October 28, 2001, about a month after the 9/11 attacks.
    • In the 2001 documentary film Spider-Man - Once Upon a Time The Super Heroes!, released on December 23, 2001, after 3 months of the attacks and shot of the towers were kept and remained in the film as a tribute, it was not edited for the DVD release on June 17, 2002.
    • In A.I.: Artificial Intelligence, released less than three months before the attacks, a scene set thousands of years in the future prominently featuring a badly damaged World Trade Center (albeit half-submerged in water), was not edited for its video release.
    • In the 2002 black comedy film Death to Smoochy, the North Tower of the World Trade Center is seen where Rainbow Randolph is dancing on the small bench in Duane Park in Duane Street, Lower Manhattan. In the DVD commentary, Danny Devito explained that it was the only shot in the movie that was in and he designed the shot. It means that this movie was filmed from January to May 2001, four months before the 9/11 attacks.
    • Gangs of New York, originally to be released on December 21, 2001 and was further delayed to its eventual release on December 20, 2002, ended in a shot of the contemporary New York City skyline containing the twin towers. The filmmakers had filmed the shot before the 9/11 attacks and later debated whether to remove the World Trade Center, have the towers dissolve out from the shot to signify their disappearance or remove the sequence entirely. They ultimately decided to keep the towers as originally intended. [20]
    • In Rush Hour 2, which was released a month before the attacks, several scenes where a bomb explodes at the United States Consulate General, murdering two undercover U.S. Customs agents inside of it, and Hu Li enters with a time bomb forcing two detectives Lee and Carter to escape on the makeshift zipline as she dies in the explosion at the Red Dragon Casino in Las Vegas, were not edited for its video release.
    • Other films like Changing Lanes, Independence Day, Kate & Leopold, You Stupid Man, Glitter, The Guru, Empire, City by the Sea, World Traveler, and Crazy Little Thing retained the buildings. [5]
    • Knockaround Guys was premiered on September 8, 2001, at the Oldenburg International Film Festival (3 days before the attacks) and released in theaters on October 11, 2002. The shots of the World Trade Center remained in the film.

    News coverage Edit

    Television coverage of the September 11 attacks and their aftermath was the longest uninterrupted news event in the history of U.S. television, as the major U.S. broadcast networks were on the air for 93 continuous hours. From the moment the networks broadcast the news that the first plane hit the North Tower of the World Trade Center, all programs and commercials were suspended, with all four networks broadcasting uninterrupted news coverage. [21] This was the first time since the advent of cable and satellite television that a vast number of cable networks would suspend programming to air live news coverage of events. Programming on the cable and satellite channels was also altered in the immediate aftermath, as only appropriate re-runs were aired, and commercials were either changed, suspended, or replaced by PSA messaging to help the attack's victims. Millions of television viewers, watching live broadcasts of the attacks unfolding, would see the second plane hit the South Tower and both towers collapse.

    This was the first time since the assassination of John F. Kennedy that television networks announced that there would be no television commercials or programs for an indefinite period of several days after the attacks, as it was widely felt that it was an inappropriate time for "fun and entertainment" programs to be shown when so much death and destruction was being seen live on television. During the week of the attacks, evening news broadcasts for the networks nearly doubled its average viewership audience, and it was also estimated that American adults watched an average of eight hours of television a day, again nearly double the average viewership audience. To keep up with the constant flow of information, many news networks began running continuous updates in the form of a news ticker that crawled along the bottom of the screen, which soon became a permanent feature of many networks. [22]

    During the day of the attacks, and in the days following, news broadcasters scrambled to report accurate information. Occasionally, erroneous information was broadcast. An examination of CNN's coverage of September 11, 2001 (which was replayed online, virtually in its entirety, on the fifth anniversary of the attacks on September 11, 2006) reveals that following the attack on the Pentagon, CNN also reported a fire had broken out on the National Mall and that according to a wire report, a car bomb had exploded in front of the State Department. It also broadcast an interview with a witness to the Pentagon attack who said it was a helicopter that hit the building, not a plane. CNN was not alone in airing these or similar inaccurate reports, as the subsequent examination of coverage by other networks has shown. [21]

    Reaction of various networks Edit

    • The major English language broadcast networks (ABC, CBS, and NBC) and two major Spanish language broadcasters (Univision and Telemundo) were in the last half-hour of airing their morning programs live in the Eastern and Central time zones: Good Morning America (ABC), The Early Show (CBS), Today (NBC), ¡Despierta América! (Univision), and Esta Mañana (Telemundo), respectively, at the time of the first attack. During the second attack, the networks had already suspended programming, in all time zones, to air special coverage from their respective news divisions: ABC News, CBS News, NBC News, Noticias Univision, and Noticias Telemundo. As Fox did not have a network morning program, many Fox affiliates began airing local news telecasts with coverage from Fox News. ABC, CBS, Fox, and NBC would air commercial-free, live news coverage until September 15. Some affiliates broke away from network news coverage at certain times to air their regularly-scheduled local newscasts. The three major networks brought in their main evening news anchors to lead coverage within the hour: Peter Jennings took over from GMA at 9:12 a.m., Tom Brokaw came in at 9:45 a.m. (though NBC's coverage continued under the purview of Today for several more hours), and Dan Rather went on-air at 10:00 a.m. just seconds after the first tower fell.
    • The major television stations in New York City provided local coverage of the World Trade Center attacks, though they also had to deal with the additional hamstring of their transmission facilities atop the World Trade Center being destroyed, along with six station engineers at WTC being killed in the attacks [23] outside WCBS-TV and Univision flagship WXTV (which maintained backup Empire State Building facilities), the other major New York English commercial stations hastily made arrangements with other full-power and low-power stations in the market not based at the World Trade Center (including shifts of coverage to otherwise commercial-free public television stations) to continue broadcasting their coverage over-the-air (coverage over cable television was for the most part not affected due to direct fiber connections from stations to Time Warner Cable and Cablevision the attacks pre-dated the addition of local channels to direct-broadcast satellite providers). WXTV relayed news in both Spanish and English to provide information to over-the-air viewers.
    • One station in Washington, D.C. (CBS affiliate WUSA) broadcast local coverage of the attack on the Pentagon, to some criticism that the global scale of the story was too overwhelming for WUSA to cover as a strictly local news event and they should have deferred to CBS News instead. CBS News coverage remained available in Washington, D.C. via WDCA, which at the time, was owned-and-operated by UPN and also through CBS owned-and-operated station WJZ-TV in Baltimore, Maryland.
    • Smaller broadcast networks also altered their schedules. Most affiliates of The WB simulcast coverage transmitted at the network level from CNN. In general, the majority of UPN affiliates also aired CBS News's coverage of the events, though nine of the 10 UPN stations owned by Fox Television Stations which acquired from BHC Communications before the attacks, including KCOP-TV in Los Angeles, along with other UPN affiliates that did not air CBS News coverage, instead airing Fox News' coverage, with Secaucus, New Jersey-based WWOR-TV continuing New York-based local coverage UPN resumed regular programming on September 13. Pax TV (later i: Independent Television, now Ion Television) aired coverage from NBC News, which had a close relationship with many of the network's affiliates at the time through news share agreements with local NBC affiliates. The All News Channel continued their usual "news wheel" format updated when needed, albeit with the full half-hour devoted to the attacks rather than its usual format. Most independent stations also suspended normal programming, but some independent stations continued to show their normal programming. was the first cable network to break the news of the first attack at 8:49 a.m. EDT, followed by CNBC at 8:50, MSNBC at 8:52, and Fox News Channel at 8:54. The first of these, CNN, provided constant live coverage of 9/11's aftermath for almost three consecutive months. The network's overnight rebroadcasts were replaced with CNNI's coverage. The other major cable and satellite television networks in the United States reacted in four ways during the attacks:
    1. Some networks suspended their program lineup and simulcast the news coverage of their affiliated broadcast networks. Disney-owned networks ESPN, ESPN2 (both of which Disney owned a stake in) and SoapNet aired coverage from ABC News (ESPN itself debated not carrying an edition of SportsCenter that day, before deciding on a special edition dealing with how the sports world was affected). MTV, VH1, CMT, BET, and TNN aired coverage from CBS News (which were all owned by the original Viacom then VH1 itself simulcast WCBS-TV's coverage at several times through the week). Turner Broadcasting System and AOL Time Warner-owned networks TBS, TNT, Shop at Home (owned by E. W. Scripps Company), Court TV, CNNfn, and CNNSI aired CNN coverage. News Corporation-owned channels FX, some regional Fox Sports Net channels, The Health Network, Speedvision, and Fox Family (which would be acquired by Disney after the attacks) aired Fox News' coverage. CNBC, periodically with its business-impact coverage, simulcast sister network MSNBC and NBC's coverages itself. C-SPAN and HSN, after initially suspending programming, simulcast coverage from the CBC's U.S. cable news channel Newsworld International (which itself simulcast CBC at several times throughout the week HSN and NWI were then under the same ownership). Discovery Communications-owned TLC and BBC America aired coverage from BBC World News. Tribune Broadcasting's Superstation WGN simulcast coverage from their New York sister station WPIX. Also, some local cable news channels also simulcast coverage from all of the major national cable news networks (in the New York metropolitan area, NY1 and News 12 provided local coverage).
    2. Other networks stopped airing programs altogether, with a still card expressing sympathies being placed on screen these included Food Network, HGTV, DIY, Lifetime, Oxygen, QVC, and Shop at Home (Food Network and Oxygen were then based in lower Manhattan, requiring them to halt all operations Oxygen would redirect their satellite feed to NY1).
    3. Other channels continued their regular programming including Comedy Central, Discovery Channel, USA Network, TBN, A&E, The History Channel, Game Show Network, Sci Fi Channel, and Bravo. The Weather Channel also continued their regular programming, albeit with extra coverage of items of interest to their audience such as airport issues and ground travel delays due to the FAA's full-stop of all air operations. Children's cable networks, including PBS Kids, Nickelodeon, Noggin, Disney Channel, Cartoon Network, Toon Disney, and Boomerang retained their usual programming schedules, with some episode removals due to violent or bomb-related imagery. Premium channels such as HBO, Showtime and Starz and their associated networks also retained their usual schedules, though triggering films with extreme violence and disaster films were quickly substituted with lighter fare.
    4. After departing from CBS News's continuous coverage, MTV decided to program a limited continuous loop of music videos, with no new videos being introduced for weeks. The playlist included only light to mournful songs and videos, which included Destiny's Child's cover of "Emotion", "I'm Like a Bird" by Nelly Furtado, and U2's "Stuck in a Moment You Can't Get Out Of".
    • Several PBS member stations and networks, such as Wisconsin Public Television, decided to air PBS Kids programming, even in primetime, outside of The NewsHour and other regular public affairs programming to provide children with a safe harbor from continuous news coverage of the attacks. Other PBS member stations and some non-commercial independent stations continued showing normal programming, though with some extended coverage if they carried foreign newscasts. Two New York area non-commercial stations with transmitter facilities away from the World Trade Center broadcast coverage from WTC-based commercial stations to allow those news operations to continue to broadcast WLIW (with their transmitter in Plainview, Long Island) simulcast coverage from WNBC, while the city-owned WNYE (transmitting then from the Empire State Building), New Jersey Network and Home Shopping station WHSE-TV simulcast coverage from WABC.
    • In Canada, CBC Newsworld broke into regular programming at 8:52 AM EDT to carry the first report of the attacks. CBC, Citytv, Global, and CTV provided English-language coverage of the attacks and its aftermath, including Operation Yellow Ribbon, while Télévision de Radio-Canada provided French-language coverage of the attacks the Canadian versions of Food Network and HGTV stopped airing programs altogether, as their American parent channels had also halted operations. In the United Kingdom, the BBC and ITV suspended their programming for in-depth coverage of the attacks but some programs continued to air including the premiere of The Blue Planet on BBC One. In Australia, the ABC, along with the Seven, Nine and Ten Networks carried live coverage from their American partner networks for several days after the attacks. Broadcasters in several countries throughout South America, Europe, Africa, Asia, Oceania and also the rest of North America suspended regular programming to air coverage of the attacks. In Japan, television channels such as Nippon TV, Fuji TV, TV Asahi, NHK, TV Tokyo and TBS suspended coverage of the aftermath of the Myojo 56 building fire that had occurred ten days before the attacks.
    • In Brazil, Rede Globo (biggest and most watched TV channel in the country) interrupted its normal programming to broadcast an special report at 9:54am local time. The journalist Carlos Nascimento informed that a plane had crashed into the World Trade Center while the TV rebroadcast the feed from CNN. The special report ended at 9:56am, but was shortly restarted as the directors started to get new information. At 10:02, when the second plane hit the South Tower, Carlos said that the images were a replay of the (first) attack until informed that those were live pictures. Shortly after, Globo started to use a generic graphic package with the text "Terrorist Attacks in the USA" over CNN's live images. Around 11:05am, the station restarted to air its normal programming but at every commercial break its news division would take over for approximately 7 minutes. At 12:00pm, Globo broadcast an special edition of Jornal Hoje (national news program). Normally the program would air after local newscasts and an sports news show. When Jornal Hoje ended, Globo decided to restart for the second time its normal programming with occasional breaks for the news division to make updates about the situation. [24] At 8:15pm, Jornal Nacional, Globo's primetime newscast, started an special edition. The program broke the record of most-watched newscast of the year. According to official numbers later released, for each 100 televisions being watched at the time, 74 were tuned into Jornal Nacional. The special edition had William Bonner (newscaster) and Fátima Bernardes as hosts and had the participation of correspondents in New York (live), Washington DC, London and Beirut. [25] The correspondent Jorge Pontual was praised by critics after a memorable report right at the heart of the World Trade Center. [26] In October 2002, that edition of the Jornal Nacional was nominated for the 30th International Emmy Awards. [27]
    • In Malaysia, television networks such as TV1, TV2 and TV3 continued their regular programming but the networks' news programs including news bulletins covering the twin towers World Trade Center attacks.
    • In the Philippines, television networks such as ABS-CBN, GMA, IBC, RPN, ABC, NBN and Studio 23 continued their regular programming but the networks' news programs including hourly news bulletins covering the attacks.

    Use of pictures Edit

    When asked for her thoughts on the attacks, First Lady Laura Bush stated that "we need to be very careful about our children". She warned parents not to let their children see the confronting images of destruction over and over, recommending that parents turn off the television and do something constructive, reassuring and calming with their kids. [28]

    Long-term television and radio transmitter damage Edit

    The transmitter facilities of WPIX, as well as six other New York City television stations and several radio stations, were destroyed as the WTC collapsed, and as mentioned above, six engineers for WABC, WCBS, WNBC, WNET and WPIX died while maintaining broadcasting operations despite the circumstances. WPIX's satellite feed froze midway into the live footage the image remained on the screen for much of the day, broadcasting continent-wide, until WPIX was able to set up alternate transmission facilities as mentioned above, Superstation WGN was used to provide a national outlet for the station's programming when transmission resumed. Eventually, adequate analog broadcast transmissions resumed several weeks later as the FCC allowed extraordinary license moves and construction permits to the Armstrong Tower along the New Jersey Palisades and the Empire State Building, returning the latter to being the main transmission site in the Tri-State area the transmitter atop 4 Times Square (then the Condé Nast Building), originally planned as only an FM backup site before the attacks, soon became a primary transmitter for several FM and television stations. However, the advent of digital television, which used New York as one of its flagship test markets at the time of the attacks, suffered a significant setback, and many stations would not build their new digital facilities until 2005 or 2006, and networks and stations across the country, in turn, had to push back many deadlines both locally and nationally regarding high definition on-air operations while New York's shuffle of transmission facilities took place.

    Programming Edit

    The most immediate impact to television was the loss of David Angell, a co-creator and co-executive producer from the NBC show Frasier, who was among the passengers on American Airlines Flight 11.

    In the United States, the start of the 2001–2002 television season was put on hold due to the extensive news coverage (several series, such as NBC's Crossing Jordan, were originally scheduled to debut on September 11), with mid-September premieres delayed until later in the month. Late-night talk shows such as The Tonight Show and Late Show with David Letterman were also off the air Letterman was already dark for the week for a pre-season vacation. Even after regular programming resumed, several talk shows remained off the air for several more days as writers and hosts determined how best to approach the sensitive situation. David Letterman was quoted on CNN as questioning whether he would even continue hosting his show. Ultimately, Letterman, Jay Leno, Jon Stewart, and other talk show hosts based in New York and Los Angeles returned to the airwaves with emotional initial broadcasts, with Letterman punctuating his thoughts by asking his audience how the attacks "made any goddamn sense." This was the second of three instances where the start of the television season was delayed due to issues outside of the control of the major television networks the other instances were the 1988–89 season (as a result of the 1988 Writers Guild of America strike) and the 2020–21 season (due to television production being halted as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic).

    Several television series, most notably The West Wing and Third Watch, produced special episodes addressing the attacks. Law & Order and its spinoff series all began their fall season premieres with a tribute to the victims. Shows such as the military based JAG and Third Watch (a series about New York City first responders) made major changes to their ongoing storylines to incorporate the event's aftermath.

    On Politically Incorrect's September 17, 2001 show, Maher's guest Dinesh D'Souza disputed President Bush's label of the terrorists being "cowards", saying the terrorists were warriors. [29] Maher agreed, and according to a transcript replied "We have been the cowards, lobbing cruise missiles from 2,000 miles away. That's cowardly. Staying in the airplane when it hits the building, say what you want about it, it's not cowardly". [29] The show was cancelled the following June, which Maher and many others saw as a result of the controversy, although ABC denied that the controversy was a factor, and said the program was cancelled due to declining ratings. [30] [31] [32] Maher said that the show struggled for advertisers in its final months. [33]

    Delayed or cancelled entertainment awards shows Edit

    • The 53rd Annual Primetime Emmy Awards, scheduled for September 16, were delayed to October 7. However, the U.S. began to bomb Afghanistan on that day, and the Emmy Awards were again postponed. They finally aired on November 4, with a somewhat somber atmosphere after surviving rumors of cancellation. Due to the delay, the event was relocated from the originally scheduled Shrine Auditorium venue to the smaller Shubert Theatre. The 2006 drama Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip featured flashbacks to this time, where two of the characters on the show were fictionally nominated for awards at this event.
    • The 2nd annualLatin Grammy Awards, scheduled for September 11, were never presented. The intended winners were instead quietly announced in a private press conference held on January 11, 2002. Some of the winners were acknowledged at the 44th Grammy Awards. Furthermore, the attacks influenced the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences to hold the 2003 Grammy Awards ceremony in New York City as part of the "healing process".

    The postponements and cancellations of various entertainment programs sparked rumors that the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences were postponing or even canceling the 74th Academy Awards ceremony. However, in a written statement released by president Frank Pierson, he denied any rumors that the attacks would affect the scheduling of the awards presentation saying that "the terrorists will have won" if they cancelled it. Nevertheless, the show went on as planned on March 24, 2002. The security was much tighter than in previous years, and the show had a more somber tone. According to New York Magazine, there were 26 references to the attacks during the telecast. [34] On October 16, 2006, the awards event itself was designated a National Special Security Event by the United States Department of Homeland Security.

    Reflecting the significant and enduring impact of September 11th on popular culture, months and years after the attacks, events were still impacted, with the 2003 Grammy Awards being held at Madison Square Garden instead of Staples Center as planned. Blockbuster Entertainment terminated their awards ceremony permanently shortly after the second delay of the Emmys.

    Other changes Edit

    • On the television series Friends, in episode 8x03 ("The One Where Rachel Tells. "), Chandler and Monica could not get on their flight for their honeymoon because Chandler joked about a bombing in the airport. After the attacks, the story was rewritten and re-shot. [35] Additionally, as the show was set in New York, a screen reading "Dedicated to the People of New York City" was added to the end of episode 8x01 ("The One After 'I Do'"), which was the first episode of the series to be broadcast after the attacks and in several subsequent episodes, Joey and other members of the crew are seen wearing NYPD and FDNY apparel. On one occasion Joey is seen in a T-shirt that says "Captain Billy Burke," an NYC firefighter who lost his life in the attack.
    • The first three seasons of the opening credits of The Sopranos featured a shot of the twin towers visible in Tony Soprano's rearview mirror. It was replaced with a generic shot beginning in the show's fourth season. [36]
    • New material was quickly added to Sesame Street following the attacks addressing issues raised. The first episode of the season involves a grease fire at Hooper's Store which traumatizes Elmo until he meets some real-life firefighters. Big Bird has to deal with his pen pal Gulliver, who does not believe birds should be friendly to other species. [37]
    • The syndicated version of the Chicago-set Married. with Children episode "Get Outta Dodge" [38] featured a scene of two Arabs with a ticking bomb at the front door of Al Bundy's house offering to buy his infamous Dodgeclunker car for $40 and asking for directions to the Sears Tower. The scene was cut from the syndicated re-airings of the episode after 9/11. The episode is intact on DVD releases.
    • A shot of a plane exploding was included in the trailer for the pilot episode of 24 but not included in the actual episode, which aired in October 2001.
    • The television series Law & Order: Special Victims Unit had their opening credits modified at the start of their third season on September 28 to remove an establishing shot of the World Trade Center.
    • An episode of The Simpsons entitled "The City of New York vs. Homer Simpson", which premiered roughly four years earlier and was partially set at the World Trade Center, was pulled from syndication by some carriers, though many are now showing it again. [39] Some individual stations or networks removed the World Trade Center scenes via their own cuts, while 20th Television still releases the episode in full for syndication, including for cable syndication on FXX. An episode aired in December 2001, entitled "She of Little Faith", contained a subplot in which Homer and Bart accidentally destroy part of the local church with a model rocket. A scene from this subplot was removed, in which a man called Hassan Jay Salam was erroneously arrested for the incident, due to the rocket having the initials "HJS" ("Homer Jay Simpson") written on it. The scene can be viewed on the complete thirteenth season DVD boxset, released in 2010.
    • An episode of Family Guy entitled "Road to Rhode Island" has a scene where Osama bin Laden distracts a security guard at the airport while the X-ray machine detects weapons. The scene was cut after 9/11 and also cut on the Family Guy: Volume 1 DVD, though the episode is intact on the Family Guy: The Freakin' Sweet Collection DVD. The episode "A Fish out of Water" was set to air on September 12, 2001. Due to the attacks, the episode was delayed and it was scheduled to air on September 19, 2001. The towers of the World Trade Center were digitally removed on the musical number "You've Got a Lot to See" from "Brian Wallows and Peter's Swallows".
    • An episode of SpongeBob SquarePants entitled "Just One Bite", when originally aired on October 5, featured a scene in which Squidward Tentacles tries to get to the Patty Vault but it was guarded by a bucket of gas and a match eventually burns him. The footage was removed after broadcast, though it remains distributed internally among the fanbase. The episode would later re-air in 2002 with an alternate scene with Squidward at the Krusty Krab door as the camera goes all the way to the "Patty Vault" in the back of the Krusty Krab. Initially, explanations for the removal were thought to be either to respect the victims of September 11, 2001, which occurred less than a month before the episode aired, or to prevent children from attempting to use and/or ignite gas. Vincent Waller has confirmed in a statement on Twitter that the removal of the scene was ultimately due to Nickelodeon being against the idea of a gag involving a match and gasoline. [40] in Kansas City skipped an airing of an episode of the children's show Jay Jay the Jet Plane depicting the after-effects of a plane crash.
    • Two episodes of Pokémon were temporarily taken off the air:
      • The episode "Tentacool and Tentacruel", due to scenes where a giant Tentacruel destroys a town called Porta Vista. A scene of the giant Tentacruel smashing a skyscraper was never removed from the opening credits of the first season, though it seems likely it was because that the season had already ended and the anime had already advanced by more than three seasons.
      • The other is "The Tower of Terror", an episode where Ash, Misty, and Brock are in Lavender Town to catch a Ghost-type Pokémon so that Ash would have an advantage over Saffron City's Gym Leader, Sabrina, who uses Psychic-type Pokémon. While no explanation has been given, it most likely had something to do with the name.
      • For similar reasons, an episode titled "A Scare in the Air", while not banned, was temporarily renamed "Spirits in the Sky".
      • "Battle Protocol" was never re-aired in the U.S. after its premiere due to a scene of Megatron smashing through a skyscraper in claw mode.
      • The opening scene of "Secret of the Ruins" featured buildings being destroyed and a reference to terrorism, and the episode was held back to be redubbed. The scene in question was recreated using footage from "Battle Protocol!". Eventually, the episode aired between "Ultra Magnus" and "Ultra Magnus: Forced Fusion". It is the episode in which Doctor Onishi's microchip is introduced, so its removal left something of a hole in the series. The original version of the episode has never been broadcast, and for international syndication, only the altered redubbed version was used.
      • "Attack From Outer Space", "Landfill" and "Sky-Byte Saves the Day" did not air in the US. "Attack" would go on to air in Canada, and all three would subsequently air in the UK. All three episodes featured buildings being destroyed, and the plot of "Sky-Byte Rampage" revolved around stopping a tower from falling over. However, this is the first episode to put focus on the O-Parts, and its removal from the lineup disrupted the continuity of the show.
      • "Spy Changers To The Rescue": There were two versions of this episode aired before and after 9/11. The pre-9/11 episode contained references to the generator possibly exploding and a scene with Prowl's jet-claw. The post 9/11 episode had the jet-claw edited out and the possibilities of "explosions" were changed to possibilities of "circuit corrosion" along with other minor dialogue changes.
      • Like television, almost all radio stations across the United States put a halt on all programs and commercials to simulcast affiliated news coverage of the attacks from ABC News Radio and CBS Radio News, or taking an audio simulcast of a television news operation, be it local or national, while national morning shows hosted by personalities such as Rick Dees or Howard Stern focused on providing both information about the attacks and call-in forums for listeners to express sympathies. Local New York all-news radio operations WINS and WCBS, along with Washington's WTOP carried locally based coverage that was simulcast on those sister FM stations without operations destroyed at the World Trade Center as AM operations with transmitters on the outskirts of metropolitan areas were unaffected outside of security concerns for studio and transmitter facilities. was scheduled to launch on September 12, 2001. As a direct result of the attacks, the launch was delayed until September 25 when the service debuted on a limited basis in San Diego and Dallas.
      • Program directors from many radio stations throughout the US retooled their playlists in response to the attacks. Common changes included the heavy rotation of songs such as "God Bless the USA" by Lee Greenwood and Whitney Houston's rendition of "The Star-Spangled Banner" from Super Bowl XXV. Meanwhile, songs such as U2's "Sunday Bloody Sunday" and Dave Matthews Band's "Crash Into Me" were excluded from playlists. Additionally, Clear Channel (now known as iHeartMedia) came under scrutiny for distributing a list of 150 potentially sensitive songs that were not recommended for broadcast immediately after the attacks. [41] 's weekly comedic news quiz show Wait Wait. Don't Tell Me! would not record or broadcast a show for the weekend of September 15–16.
      • German heavy metal band Rammstein was to debut their video for the song "Ich Will" which depicted scenes of one band member dressed as a suicide bomber. The video was immediately recalled before the premiere.
      • The Christian rap metal band P.O.D. released their album Satellite that day, spurring success for the album and its lead single "Alive" as having a positive message in the aftermath. Other bands associated with aggressive heavy rock genres such as nu metal and rap metal experienced a downturn in sales due to the attacks. These genres continued to decline in popularity during the following years. [42][43]
      • New Zealand rock band Shihad changed their name to Pacifier in response to American audiences comparing "Shihad" with "Jihad." They have since resumed using their original name.
      • According to Arrogant Worms band member Trevor Strong, the song "Worst Seat on the Plane" was never performed live due to Idiot Road, the album it was featured on, being released on September 18, 2001, one week after the terrorist attacks. [44]
      • American alternative rock band Jimmy Eat World voluntarily changed the name of their now platinum certified fourth studio release Bleed American, which was released on July 18, 2001, out of concern that the title may be misinterpreted. The album was re-released as the eponymous Jimmy Eat World. Also, the title track was renamed "Salt Sweat Sugar." In 2008, a deluxe version of the album was released, reverting both the album and song to their original Bleed American title.
      • American pop-punk band Blink 182 re-filmed the video for their song "Stay Together for the Kids." The original video was filmed on September 10–11 and depicted the band playing in an abandoned house which, during the video, was struck repeatedly by a wrecking ball and eventually destroyed. The attacks occurred following the wrapping of filming. Both the band and director Samuel Bayer felt that the images portrayed in the video were too similar to the attacks on the World Trade Center and opted to re-shoot the video. The original video for the song is available on some of the band's DVD releases as well as on YouTube.
      • American rock band Thirty Seconds to Mars reshot the cover art for their self-titled debut album that originally featured a fighter pilot ejecting from an exploding plane. The band explained that they never saw it as a violent image, but felt that it was inappropriate in the wake of the events.
      • American thrash metal band Slayer inadvertently caused controversy when their album God Hates Us All was released that same day. The album's original release was July 10 (two months before the attacks), but was delayed due to issues regarding audio mixing, distribution and - especially - the explicit original artwork depicting a desecrated Bible. , along with other musicians, performed the songs "What More Can I Give" and "Man in the Mirror" at the United We Stand benefit concert held at the RFK Memorial Stadium on October 21, 2001, as a tribute to the victims of the attacks.
      • The Hungarian composer Robert Gulya, who was living in the US from 2000 to 2002, started to work on a guitar concerto in autumn 2001, shortly after the September 11 attacks. Gulya chose a theme for the concerto's first movement, [45] which reminds of the terror attacks. [46] The world premiere of this concerto was filmed and released on the DVD Live in Budapest by the Austria guitarist Johanna Beisteiner. was giving an interview about his album "Rockin' the Suburbs" (released on September 11) but was cut short, due to the plane crashes.
      • The song "New York City Cops" was replaced with "When it Started" on the U.S. version of The Strokes' debut album Is This It.
      • Hip hop band The Coup were originally set to release their album Party Music early in the month. The original cover art depicted band members Boots Riley and Pam the Funkstress blowing up the World Trade Center with a mocked-up electronic tuner "detonator" and crossed drumsticks. Despite Riley's protests to keep the original album art, releasing label 75 Ark changed the art to a more generic image of a held martini glass filled with burning gasoline (a gasoline can is seen in the background), and released it on November 6. 's Live Album Live Scenes from New York, released on September 11, 2001, had an album cover that depicted the skyline of New York City in flames. The album was recalled and later re-released, with a different cover. The band later did "Sacrificed Sons" on Octavarium as a tribute to those who died in 9/11. Keyboardist Jordan Rudess even did the album 4NYC as a charity album for the tragedy. The band changed the name of one of the songs from their 2002 album Six Degrees of Inner Turbulence: "The Great Debate", which discusses stem-cell research controversies, was originally titled "Conflict at Ground Zero" based on the lyrics in the chorus, but it was renamed as news reports started to refer to the site of the attacks as "Ground Zero". [47] The band was actually in a Manhattan studio conducting final mixes of the album on the day in question. [48]
      • English rock band Bush changed the name of the lead single off their 2001 album Golden State from "Speed Kills" to "The People That We Love". Also changed was the original cover art for the album, which featured a commercial airplane. [49]
      • The tribute concert Come Together: A Night for John Lennon's Words and Music, a fundraiser for the Robin Hood Foundation dedicated to the music of John Lennon, took place in early October 2001 in New York. Due to its timing, much of the concert also became a tribute to the city of New York and particularly its emergency services.
      • Singer Madonna postponed a concert performance in Los Angeles, California.
      • Rock band Fabulous Disaster cancelled two shows originally scheduled for September 11th and 12th, as booked by Cause Result Entertainment.
      • Rock band Aerosmith cancelled three shows originally scheduled for September 11th, 13th, and 15th, all on the Eastern Seaboard, during their Just Push Play Tour. They resumed their tour on September 17 in Atlanta.
      • The San Francisco Symphony continued with a previously planned program of Mahler's 6th Symphony, the "Tragic," on September 12–15. The subsequent recording was highly acclaimed and garnered the 2003 Grammy Award for Best Orchestral Performance. [50] postponed a concert in Tampa, Florida, scheduled for the day. She also cancelled the entire European leg of her All for You Tour due to travel concerns after the attacks. 's next project after Brand New Day (1999) was to be On Such a Night, a live CD and DVD album recorded at his Italian villa and simulcast on the Internet. The concert was scheduled for September 11th and was altered due to the terrorist attacks in America that day. The webcast was shut down after one song (a reworked version of "Fragile"), after which Sting let the audience decide whether to continue the show the audience voted "yes". The subsequent album and DVD were released as . All This Time (November 2001) and was dedicated "to all those who lost their lives on that day".
      • Digital cable channel MTVX, which showed mainly hard rock and heavy metalmusic videos, was replaced on May 1, 2002, with the hip hop-based MTV Jams, due to not only hip hop's growing mainstream presence, but the editing of rock radio station playlists or complete change in format post-9/11 to remove aggressive and violent songs that were inappropriate for play, along with a plunge in viewer requests for the network. A good number of radio stations switched to more neutral classic rock or adult album alternative formats in the aftermath. The channel became BET Jams in 2015.
      • Stations began to start all-Christmas music formats and playlists through Christmas Day earlier (usually between Halloween and Thanksgiving) to provide a respite to listeners who looked for more calming dial choices, a trend that continues to the present day.
      • Before the 9/11 attacks, the American DJ and media personality Khaled Mohamed Khaled went by the name "Arab Attack", before changing his moniker to DJ Khaled following the attacks due to his concern about offending victims. [51]
      • The Walt Disney World attraction The Timekeeper, a 360-degree film presentation that features a panoramic view of New York City, including the Twin Towers, closed on September 11, 2001, and updated the scene of New York City so that the titular character was sent to 2000, a year before the attacks. The attraction closed five years later. [citation needed] on the Gold Coast in Queensland, Australia, immediately after the attack (late evening in Australia), received word from the CEO of Village Roadshow Pictures, the company that owned the park, that he wanted all attractions and video games that were "gun based" shut down or removed before they opened the park the following morning. Several coin-operated shooting games such as Point Blank were removed from the video game section, and the "old-timey" shooting gallery from the Western area was also removed. Gun based video games made a reappearance in the park several years later however, the Western shooting gallery was never re-opened.

      Many major sporting events in North America were cancelled. These included:

      How 9/11 Changed These Muslim Americans' Lives Forever

      “There was a sense of intrigue it was something different,” said Adam Soltani, the executive director of the Council on American-Islamic Relations’ Oklahoma chapter, of how others viewed Islam. “But I didn’t sense any fear in being Muslim at all.”

      That was before the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, when a grieving America desperately tried to understand how anyone could carry out such an assault and found its scapegoat: Muslims, Arabs and anyone who looked like the terrorists responsible for hijacking four U.S. airliners and killing nearly 3,000 people after flying them into the World Trade Center towers and the Pentagon.

      “I think for most American Muslims, many of us categorize our lives as pre-9/11 and post-9/11 because of the impact the attack had on our lives in a personal and professional capacity,” said Zainab Chaudry, the outreach manager at the Maryland chapter of the CAIR .

      Suddenly, Muslim Americans went from being one of the least targeted religious groups in the U.S. to seeing hate crimes against those associated with Islam jump 1,600 percent, an FBI report in 2002 found. Today, Islamophobic hate crimes remain five times more common than they were before 9/11.

      In light of the 15th anniversary of the attacks, The Huffington Post spoke with Muslim Americans of all different walks of life ― many of whom have since dedicated their lives to fighting Islamophobia ― about how 9/11 and the subsequent rise of anti-Muslim bigotry changed their lives forever. These are their stories.

      9/11 marked the beginning of a new existence

      Many Muslim Americans told HuffPost that Sept. 11, 2001 marks the day their religion went from something others found interesting and mysterious to something viewed as sinister.

      Soltani was 18 at the time and in his first year at the University of Central Oklahoma, where he served as president of the Muslim Student Association. He had started practicing Islam two years earlier and brushed off his parents’ urging him to stay home from school after they heard the news. It wasn’t until he got to the mosque near campus that something clicked.

      “Normally about 150 people would attend the weekly prayer service, and there were no more than 20 people,” he said. “That’s when it hit me that life was not going to be the same for me as a Muslim in America as it had ever been before.”

      The overnight change was so pronounced, even those who were young at the time remember the shift.

      “I never felt that anyone ever hated me or my family for being Muslim. Instead, people just weren’t familiar with what being Muslim meant,” said Tasnia Ahamed, a masters student at Stony Brook University who was aged 9 at the time. “ After 9/11, things were definitely different.”

      The attacks led some Muslims to examine their faith

      Chaudry’s dad called her on 9/11 and told her to take off her hijab out of fear for her safety. She was in her first year of school at the University of Maryland and had just started wearing the headscarf a month before the attacks. She wouldn’t put it on again for two weeks, instead wearing baseball caps and hoodies.

      During that period without her hijab, she found herself flooded with questions about the fundamentals of Islam.

      “I wondered what Islam truly taught,” she recalled. “If these people claim to be Muslim and they’re doing these kinds of attacks, do I really want to belong to that religion? I think for Muslims, it was a period of deep introspection . I thought, if this is a religion that promotes terrorism, I don’t want any part of it.”

      Saquib Rahim, now a doctor in New York, felt similarly challenged. At the time, he was 21 and in his first year of medical school.

      “On an internal level, it forced me to confront what had just happened what it made me feel about my faith (and others who claimed to share that faith) and how did I want to construct my relationship with both God and my direct environment,” he wrote to HuffPost.

      After weeks studying the tenets of the religion and regaining confidence in Islam’s peaceful message, Chaudry put her hijab back on, knowing that would propel her into a demanding role.

      “I realized that I was going to be in a position where, at least for the foreseeable future, I was going to have to answer difficult questions and have difficult conversations,” she said. “And I wouldn’t be able to go back to that privileged existence where I had the security blanket of naively thinking I wouldn’t be held accountable for actions I wasn’t personally engaged in.”

      First encounter with Islamophobia

      “I don’t think I could forget that incident if I wanted to,” Rahim said of his first post-9/11 experience with Islamophobic comments. He was sitting in the dining hall weeks after the attack when a classmate came up to him and asked how his house was.

      “I looked at him pretty puzzled, for the question felt out of left field. He then looked directly at me and said, ‘Well I hear we’re finally bombing your people, so I figured I’d ask,’ Rahim recalled

      Abed Ayoub, the national legal and policy director of the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee in Washington, D.C., got his first taste of 9/11-linked Islamophobia at the University of Michigan-Dearborn campus on the day of the attacks.

      “I was pulling my car into a parking spot when another car took the spot,” recalled Ayoub, who was 21 at the time. “I pulled my window down to ask the driver why she cut me off and took the spot. She spit into my car and told me this isn’t my country and to go home.”

      The “go home” attack was familiar to many. Tahra Goraya, a full-time parent in Santa Monica first heard the insult a month after 9/11, when she was in her car stopped at an intersection.

      “A couple crossing the street in front of me stopped, pointed at me and started to yell profanities and yelled for me to ‘go home,’” said Goraya, who was 28 at the time. “I was shocked, dumfounded, speechless and angry. I wanted to yell back that I was home this is home.”

      Weeks after 9/11, Soltani and some Muslim friends at the University of Central Oklahoma were walking to the mosque after a football game when a truck full of teenagers pulled up next to them

      “They yelled at us, ‘Go back home you sand-niggers,’” and that was the first time in my life that I’d come face-to-face with that time of racial slur and that type of discriminatory-inspired rhetoric,” he said. “That’s when I realized that things weren’t the same or as safe as they used to be.”

      Islamophobia became a part of daily life

      After 9/11, everything Goraya did at work became fodder for Islamophobes. She had just started serving as the executive director of a drug-prevention nonprofit and “suddenly became the most visible Muslim in town,” she recalled.

      When she made headlines for her work curbing youth access to tobacco and alcohol, someone wrote to the paper saying it was her attempt to impose Sharia law and slowly abolish all alcohol and tobacco products.

      “[T]he links people were making to my work were getting ridiculous,” she said.

      Muslim Americans had to get used to terrorist “jokes” too.

      Salma Siddique, a pediatrician from Brooklyn, was at a comedy club a few years after the attacks when the comedian picked her name from a raffle.

      “As I was walking up, he said my last name a few times and then jumped into a barrage of terrorist and Muslim jokes,” she said. “The show that night wasn’t huge, but there were enough people in the crowd laughing — some perhaps uncomfortably, but still laughing. I felt publicly humiliated and embarrassed, not for being Muslim, but for being in a place that made me feel like being Muslim was a bad thing.”

      After 9/11, things as innocuous as a clothing choice could trigger an Islamophobic remark. When Negeen Sadeghi-Movahed, a law student at the American University Washington College of Law, was in high school, her favorite trench coat set off another student.

      “She kind of jerked back at me . and she said, ‘Why do you have that jacket on?’” Sadeghi-Movahed recalled. She replied that she was cold, but the girl pressed further, demanding to know what it was hiding.

      “She said, ‘Well I don’t know what you have underneath it. It could be a bomb.’”

      Sadeghi-Movahed just walked away.

      “I never wore that jacket again,” she said. “I just couldn’t do it.”

      Some casual phrases became off-limits. Chaudry stopped feeling safe saying “he or she’s the bomb” because people would think she had a bomb.

      “The level of responsibility that that carries is unbelievable ― the standards to which we’re sometimes expected to hold ourselves to, the burden,” she said.

      Goraya said those fears and pressures kept her mother from stepping outside her home in Bakersfield, California.

      “My mom . was harassed grocery shopping and driving days after the attacks,” she said. “She stopped going out altogether and didn’t leave the house. My siblings, my dad and I all tried to convince her to live her life and not give up on her daily activities like shopping, going to the gym or visiting friends, but she would not have it.”

      Even kids were blamed

      Texas A&M University student Nimrah Riaz ― who spoke out for justice after a gunman opened fire on her family’s mosque in July ― was in third grade when 9/11 occurred.

      “Later that week, I found a letter on my desk from my best friend in third grade, which stated that her mom did not allow her to be friends with a Pakistani,” she said. “I was only 9 years old.”

      Jehan Mansy, a Los Angeles-based content editor and columnist at the blog Miss Muslim, was even shamed by her high school teacher the day of the attacks.

      “The principal came on the PA system and demanded all teachers turn the televisions and radios off,” she told HuffPost. “My physics teacher didn’t obey and she turned to me and said, ‘We all know, it’s a terrorist attack from your people.’”

      And other kids picked up on those sentiments. Jenan Matari, the New York City-based co-founder and chief commercial officer at MissMuslim, was 10 when 9/11 occurred.

      “On my first day back at school, one of the kids I used to ride the bus with every morning walked to the back of the bus and said, ‘Why’d you blow up the towers? Stupid Muslims,’” she said. “It wasn’t until a few weeks after the Towers fell that my parents sat us down and explained what was happening in the world. From that point on it was, ‘Don’t make it known that you’re Muslim.’”

      Air travel was suddenly humiliating

      Sadeghi-Movahed said she’s had a “pretty horrible relationship” with the Transportation Security Administration on her post-9/11 travels. “More often than not, almost every single time I’m traveling, I get stopped and I get patted down,” she said.

      When she shows TSA agents her ID, they ask her where her name is from instead of where she’s from.

      “So I can’t go, ‘California, born and raised,’” Sadeghi-Movahed said. “I have to say my name is Iranian, and it doesn’t usually end in my favor.”

      She’s gotten the dreaded “SSSS” stamp on her boarding pass. The Secondary Security Screening Selection subjects passengers to additional inspections.

      “It’s supposedly random, but the only people I know who’ve ended up on it are Muslim and usually Iranian,” she said.

      Riaz said when she travels with her family, there’s always at least one person in the group with an SSSS-stamped boarding pass, and she always gets “a free ‘massage’ so to say,” after going through the metal detectors.

      “[A]t the airports, I feel as if I always have to have a smile on my face, or make friendly talk with the TSA members, or the person sitting next to me in the airplane, in order to smooth my flying experience,” she said.

      Nihal Al Qawasmi, the New York City-based co-founder and editorial director at MissMuslim, once had a TSA agent tell her that her headscarf was pretty but not to wear it next time she flew.

      “After noticing how baffled I was, the agent quickly tried to patch up the damage by saying, ‘No, your headscarf is fine but it might be the reason the metal detector went off,’” she said. “I was still baffled, because I was more than positive that cotton scarves aren’t made out of metal.”

      They’re expected to be model Muslims

      Post-9/11 Islamophobia demanded that all Muslims answer for the violent actions of a few extremists. That dynamic forced them into a “model Muslim” role that didn’t always feel fair, many Muslim Americans told HuffPost.

      “It really catapulted many Muslims like myself, especially Muslim women who wear the headscarf, into this very visible, frontline role of what it means to be Muslim in America,” Chaudry said. “Whether we wanted to or not, we were perceived to be the ambassadors of our faith.”

      Soltani, still in his first year of college, suddenly found himself doing media interviews with no previous experience.

      “I was looked at by all my classmates and peers as the ‘model Muslim’ if you will, whether I was or not,” he said. “I was the representation of my faith to many people, and I think that’s still true today for a lot of Muslims in places like Oklahoma, where at best we’re 1 percent of the statewide population.”

      For young Muslims, the pressure to maintain a sunny disposition and stand out in all the right ways was simply part of growing up in a post-9/11 world.

      “I try to be as cheerful and as positive about everything as possible,” Sadeghi-Movahed said. “I have to mute parts of myself in order for other parts of myself to be recognized, which should not be a problem anybody has to deal with.” Navigating those parts of her identity when she was an undergraduate at the University of California, Los Angeles, is part of what led her to help found the Southwest Asian and North African Coalition, a group seeking to unite students from a region most of the Western world defines by its divided politics.

      “Every day there was that struggle of wanting to be a normal American kid, but I was reminded constantly that I had to be ‘better than average’ or ‘more behaved’ than my friends because of my race and religion,” Matari lamented.

      That pressure is ongoing, Chaudry said, but being a proud, visible Muslim is one of the most important things she does.

      “The thing that I felt strongly about was to send a message to the younger generation that if I took off my headscarf or if I changed my beliefs or my representation of my beliefs, then in a way I’m kind of saying that Islam was responsible for 9/11 or condoned what happened on 9/11,” she said. “And that couldn’t be further from the truth.”

      Rowaida Abdelaziz, Sharaf Mowjood and Christopher Mathias contributed reporting to this story.

      The Huffington Post is covering anti-Muslim discrimination and those who are working to combat it. The Islamophobia tracker is our effort to create a thorough look at the scope and severity of Islamophobia, and illuminate initiatives and discussions that aim to stop it. Why? Because hate and bigotry are toxic for everyone. If you have a story you’d like to share, please email us at [email protected]

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