NIST WTC analysis classifies victims' locations in Towers


As part of its building and fire investigation of the World Trade Center (WTC) disaster, the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) released an interim analysis on July 20 of the location of the 2,749 victims that classifies the decedents as being at/above or below the floors of impact and specifies the number of victims found in each of the WTC towers.

The analysis categorizes all names provided by the City of New York as decedents. It also identifies types of first responders who perished in the disaster. The analysis does not specify the names or exact locations of decedents.

Knowing the location of victims assists NIST in better understanding occupant behavior, evacuation and emergency response operations after terrorists flew two aircraft into the WTC towers, including the effects of aircraft impact, ensuing fires and overall building collapse. It also helps NIST to recommend possible changes in building design, construction, maintenance and operation that would improve the safety of occupants and first responders.

To identify locations, NIST relied on more than 300 face-to-face interviews and 800 telephone surveys, various Web sites maintained by survivors or victims' families and colleagues, several media outlets' reports, and a badge list maintained by the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey.

Source: Eurekalert & others

Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 21 Feb 2009
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