September 11, 2001 Plane Flight Routes

On Tuesday, September 11, 2001 nineteen terrorists affiliated with al-Qaeda hijacked four commercial passenger jet airliners. Each team of hijackers included a trained pilot.

flight aircraft
Flight 11 Boeing 767-223ER

Flight 175 Boeing 767-222
Flight 175
Flight 77 Boeing 757-223
 Flight 77
Flight 93 Boeing 757-223
Flight 93

 

Boeing 767

Passenger Seating Configuration
   Typical 3-class
   Typical 2-class
   Typical 1-class

181
224
up to 255
Cargo 2,875 cu ft (81.4 cu m)
Engines
maximum thrust
Pratt & Whitney PW4062
63,300 lb (281.6 kN)

GE CF6-80C2B7F
62,100 lb (276.2 kN)
Maximum Fuel Capacity 23,980 U.S. gal (90,770 l)
Maximum Takeoff Weight 395,000 lb (179,170 kg)
Maximum Range 6,600 nautical miles (12,223 km)
Typical Cruise Speed at 35,000 feet Mach 0.80 530 mph (851 kph)
Length (767-200) 159.17 ft (48.51 m)
(767-300) 201.33 ft (54.99 m)
(767-400ER) 242.33 ft (61.42 m)
Wingspan (767-200) 156.08 ft (47.57 m)
(767-300) 156.08 ft (47.57 m)
(767-400ER) 170.33 ft (51.97 m)
Height (767-200) 52.00 ft (15.85 m)
(767-300) 52.00 ft (15.85 m)
(767-400ER) 55.33 ft (16.88 m)
Wing Area (767-200) 3,050 ft² (283.35 m²)

 

Boeing 757

Passengers
Typical 2-class configuration
Typical 1-class configuration

200
228
Cargo 1,670 cu ft (43.3 cu m)
Engines
maximum thrust
Rolls-Royce RB211-535E4
40,200 lb (179 kN)

Rolls-Royce RB211-535E4B
43,500 lb (193.5 kN)

Pratt & Whitney PW2037
36,600 lb (162.8 kN)

Pratt & Whitney PW2040
40,100 lb (178.4 kN)
Maximum Fuel Capacity 11,489 gal (43,490 l)
Maximum Takeoff Weight 255,000 lb (115,680 kg)
Maximum Range 3,900 nautical miles (7,222 km)
Cruise Speed Mach 0.80
Basic Dimensions
  Wing span
  Overall Length
  Tail Height
  Interior Cabin Width 
  Body Exterior Width

124 ft 10 in (38.05 m)
155 ft 3 in (47.32 m)
44 ft 6 in (13.6 m)
11 ft 7 in (3.5 m)
12 ft 4 in (3.7 m)

 

 

American Airlines Flight 11

On the morning of Tuesday, September 11, 2001, a lot of people were going to be late for work in New York City, which for many started at 9:00 a.m. or later. It was the first day of school for many local children and it also was a primary election day in New York. The weather was clear and comfortable with little wind to speak of, so some took time to do early morning errands. As a result, only about 8,900 of the typical 20,000 people were in WTC 1 shortly before 9:00 a.m. At 8:46:30 a.m. EDT, five hijackers flew American Airlines Flight 11 (AA 11) with 11 crew and 76 passengers into the north face of WTC 1.

The Boeing 767-200ER was a twin-engine, wide-body aircraft, 159 ft 2 in. long, with a wingspan of 156 ft 1 in. Empty, it weighed 183,500 lb. It could carry 181 passengers in its three-class seating configuration and 23,980 gal (158,200 lb) of jet fuel as it covered its maximum cruising range of 6,600 miles. The maximum total weight the plane could carry was specified at 395,000 lb; the typical cruising speed was 530 mph. 

 

On that day, AA Flight 11 was much lighter. Bound from Boston for Los Angeles, some 3,000 miles away, it carried only about half the full load of jet fuel. When it hit the north tower, it likely contained about 10,000 gal (66,000 lb), evenly distributed between the right and left wing tanks. Because of the tight maneuvers as the plane approached the tower, the baffles in both tanks had directed the fuel toward the inboard side of each wing. The passenger cabin was more than half empty. The cargo bay, carrying less than a full load of luggage, contained five tons of luggage, mail, electronic equipment, and food. The total weight of the aircraft was estimated to be 283,600 lb.

 

 

Crashed: 08:46 EDT into north tower of World Trade Center

Killed: 92, including nine flight attendants and both pilots, plus many others in the tower.
The Boeing 767 from Boston to Los Angeles, departed from Boston's Logan airport at 07:59 EDT. It hit the north tower between the 95th and the 103rd floor.

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South face damage of WTC 1 with key aircraft component locations marked

When the hijackers took over the aircraft and attempted to communicate with passengers, air traffic controllers overheard what they said. At 08:24 the following transmission came from the plane: "We have some planes. Just stay quiet, and you’ll be OK. We are returning to the airport.” Seconds later another transmission said: “Nobody move. Everything will be OK. If you try to make any moves, you’ll endanger yourself and the aeroplane. Just stay quiet.”

Simulation of aircraft impact damage to the 96th floor in WTC 1

There were no survivors among the 1,355 people who were on or above the 92nd floor. The aircraft had destroyed all egress paths downward, and roof rescue was impossible. Of the roughly 7,545 building occupants who started that morning below the 92nd floor, all but 107 escaped the building. Those left behind were trapped by debris, awaiting assistance, helping others, or were just too late in starting their egress.

United Airlines Flight 175

Sixteen and a half minutes after the first impact, five hijackers flew United Airlines (UA) Flight 175, with 9 crew and 51 passengers, into WTC 2 at about 540 mph, about 100 mph faster than AA 11 . UA 175 was also a Boeing 767-200ER and had also left Boston, bound for Los Angeles. It flew into WTC 2 carrying about 9,100 gal (62,000 lb) of jet fuel, evenly distributed between the inboard portions of the left and right wing tanks. The cargo bay held about nine tons of luggage, mail, electrical equipment, and food. Combining this with the combustible cabin materials and luggage, the plane brought about 14 tons of solid combustibles into the tower with it.

South face damage of WTC 2 with key aircraft component locations marked

Crashed: 09:03 EDT in to south tower of the World Trade Center

Simulation of aircraft impact damage to the 78th through 83rd floors in WTC 2.

Killed: 65, including cabin crew and pilots, plus many more in the tower
The second airliner crashed about 15 minutes after the first. It left Boston's Logan airport at 08:14 and was en route to Los Angeles when it was hijacked. It hit the south tower at about the level of the 80th floor.

Likely locations of World Trade Center decedents at time of impact

a. Where possible, NIST used eyewitness accounts to place individuals. Where no specific accounts existed, NIST used
employer and floor information to place individuals.
b. These individuals were typically security guards and fire safety staff who were observed performing activities below the
floors of impact after the aircrafts struck.
c. These 24 individuals were largely performing maintenance, janitorial, delivery, safety, or security functions.
d. Emergency responders were defined to be people who arrived at the site from another location. Thus, security staff and Port
Authority staff (different from PA Police Officers) were not defined as emergency responders.
e. Does not include the five hijackers per aircraft. Credit NIST

American Airlines Flight 77

Crashed: 09:37 into the Pentagon, US military headquarters, in Washington DC

Killed: 64, including four flight attendants and two pilots and 125 in the Pentagon
The third plane, a Boeing 757, took off from from Dulles Airport, Washington, at 08:10 and was en route to Los Angeles when it was hijacked. It was seen approaching Washington from the south-west. Just a few miles outside the city it made a 270 degree turn and lined up on the Pentagon. The impact and resulting fireball caused a five-storey section of the building to collapse.

United Airlines Flight 93

Crashed: 10:03 EDT 80 miles (128 km) southeast of Pittsburgh

Killed: 44, including five cabin crew and two pilots
Flight 93, a Boeing 757, took off from Newark, New Jersey, at 08:42 bound for San Francisco. It crashed into the rural Somerset county in Pennsylvania.