CBS Sept. 11, 2001 9:54 am - 10:36 am 42min.
Andrea:…nothing coming in, nothing leaving, all traffic, air traffic nationwide has been shut down by the Federal, Federal Aviation Administration, in reaction to what ah, definitely appears to be a terrorist attack on the United States, first there at the ah, World Trade Center in New York, now, as you’ve heard from Dave Statter, where the west side of the Pentagon, an area near the heliport, um, was hit by a plane.
Mike: (portentously) Again the White House has been evacuated after the Secret Service received credible threat, a credible threat of a terrorist act against the Presidential mansion and residence, again the AP is reporting the Secret Service has received a credible threat, a terrorist threat, against the presidential mansion and residence.
Andrea: We also have learned that Blair Mansion, ah which is the residence of heads of state who come in as guests of the United States, has also been evacuated, again specifically BWI but this covers every airport in the United States, they have been shut down, all air traffic nationwide, of course in our area that mean BWI, National, Dulles, all closed down, nothing coming in nothing going out this is a horrible sight, and a scary very frightening day.
Mike: (01:30) Again, what you are looking at now is the Pentagon. Some witnesses say it appeared to be an American Airlines, 757…
Andrea: American Airlines 757…
Mike:…which plowed into the helipad part of the Pentagon, the 395 side of the Pentagon (pause, sigh) the ah…hold on just one minute…
Andrea: OK we just want to update you in case you have not heard or are just turning on and don’t know what you’re looking at, this is not a made-for-TV movie, this is the real thing, on the left black billowing smoke from the Pentagon, on the right billowing smoke from the twin towers of the World Trade Center in New York 02:01 shortly after 8:44 this morning in New York, a small, some say a twin engine plane, crashed into the ah World Trade Center tower on the right of your screen, about 18 minutes later an airliner, some say hi-jacked, a 757, that you’re looking at right now, this is a tape of that earlier this morning, ah, that building and that plane going deliberately, heading straight into the tower on the left of your screen.
Mike: President Bush ordered, orders a full-scale investigation, quoting the President, “Hunt down the folks who committed this act.”
Andrea: Shortly after the President made that statement, we were getting word that there had been a plane heading towards the Pentagon, going down, and that’s what you see on the left-hand side of your screen the picture in the box on the left side. Dave Statter said you could see it, the flames were beginning to diminish but what observers noted, and those were in the airline industry, so we kind of take what they’re saying for, ah, at the word, 757 American Airlines, they could see the plane, they could see the markings, crashed into the west side of the Pentagon, near the heliport.
Mike: This is (03:19) a live picture we’re just getting here. This is the firefighters, battling the blaze, at the Pentagon (northbound traffic moving rapidly) Look at that!
Andrea: So you can see the damage.
Mike: This is just going to be raw tape that Dave Statter is just feeding into us.
Andrea: Feeding into us.
Mike: You can see….this terrorist….apparent terrorist attack, a jet slammed into the Pentagon about 15 minutes ago, the helipad side on 395. We have no word yet on casualties. The Pentagon has been evacuated as has the White House, the U.S. Capital Building and Blair Mansion.
Andrea: Before this happened at the Pentagon, President Bush went on the air to talk about the response, the U.S. response in light of the World Trade Center, but again, this is what happened right after he said we are going to hunt down the folks responsible for the apparent terrorist attack in New York City and shortly after that, this is what happened at the Pentagon in Arlington, We are just getting across the wires on Los Angeles, ah police departments there are on tactical alert but there have been no threats in Los Angeles that police are aware of, but as you can imagine major American cities are on heightened alert and Los Angeles is saying we are on citywide tactical alert and have mobilized their anti-terrorist division, Let’s go back to Dave Statter with more from the site of the Pentagon, Dave
(4:43) Dave: Can you hear me now?
(4:44) Andrea: we can.
(4:45) Dave: OK We’re here with Michael Kelly who is a witness to this attack at the Pentagon. I’m going to let him describe what he saw here, I guess about 20 minutes ago …right, right…Michael Kelly? First of all, let me first describe the scene: this is the west side of the Pentagon, ah, the heliport side, off of Washington Blvd. Were you driving, or what?
Kelly: Yes I was in the, traffic on the, the 14th St bridge, right at the Pentagon, tied up going into town and I heard this plane come over my head it was really slow.
Dave: What size plane?
Kelly: It sounded like a ……small plane, but it was very, very low, and the next thing I know there was this tremendous explosion as it’s hit the Pentagon, I looked right, I looked over, and the smoke started coming up, and pieces of the plane were, and pieces of the Pentagon were falling on the 14th Street…onto the Shirley highway…very scary…so I decided not to go across the 14th Street bridge I came around and I wound up here stopped in the traffic right at the Pentagon, I was trying to get back over to the Memorial bridge but um no luck.
Dave: Had you known about the World Trade Center?
Kelly: Oh ya, I was listening to WTOP radio the whole time, and then this thing came right over my head and ah….it plowed…it was clearly a similar situation to what happened in New York.
Dave: There are injured people here we can’t tell you how many, we have certainly seen Arlington County Fire and Rescue crews the paramedics working on somebody in front of us, um, we have not heard the number of people injured. This attack as you can see did not seem to really penetrate the building a great distance even though there is a great amount of fire on this side of the Pentagon, which I believe is, you can compared it to the World Trade Center, I think the Pentagon has always been called the largest office building in the world, so there is a comparison there besides its obvious strategic implications. ah Arlington Fire has called in extra equipment. They’ve called in the airport foam unit, which…
Andrea: (06:29) Dave, Dave
Dave: Yes go ahead go ahead
Andrea: …Dave, we just want to break in and go back to New York where Dan Rather is anchoring the coverage , where one of the towers 06:38 (10:00am) at the World Trade Center has collapsed, let’s go back to CBS
Rather: there are no confirmed fatalities. Now in Washington, the Pentagon has had a fire and explosions, much speculation about what would have caused the fires and explosions at the Pentagon in Washington, but very few facts. David Martin, our Pentagon correspondent says he has seen, I believe he said, five injured people at the Pentagon, ah one eyewitness , and only one so far says he thinks, and I put that in quotation marks, he thinks a plane crashed into the Pentagon, but there have been rumors all day and we’re trying to separate the rumors from the facts pause Now you’re looking at a live picture of the twin towers of the World Trade Center, ah, in flames ah, with much smoke, ah, in the last few minutes there have been two reports but not yet officially, officially, confirmed that a portion of at least one of the towers has collapsed, but I caution that that is an unconfirmed report although it comes from two sources and it is unclear whether that collapse is the interior of the building or some portion of the exterior of the building. I want to emphasis again, not to be redundant, but this is a day in which rumors are going to spread like mildew in damp basements and ah there’ll be reports, some of them will be officially confirmed, some not, that’s the environment in which we’re dealing now President Bush was in Florida this morning he called this an apparent act of terrorism and rushed back to Washington, the President is in the air going back to Washington at the moment. Now in Washington, ah, reports spread that a plane also crashed into the Pentagon, see, ah, David Martin says there are at least several injuries, “several” is the word he used the FAA has banned all aircraft take-offs nationwide, here in New York the city is on a full terrorist alert, bridges and tunnels are closed, you’ll recall the World Trade center was the target of a terrorist bombing in 1993. Now, again, it is important to point out that the television, what we can show you is at the end of a television camera, the whole city is not in smoke and flames, not by a long shot, ah, the city is on a terrorist alert, ah, entry into the city has been closed off, tunnels and bridges have been closed off as a precautionary measure, but, you know, in many, many areas of New York City life goes on this morning, the same is true in Washington D.C. just keep in mind when you see this picture constantly, it’s of one section of New York City and we go to Washington for a picture of the Pentagon, the same thing, ah, these pictures…(09:25) (total: 2minutes 47seconds in New York)
Mike: All right, this is Mike Buchanan along with Andrea Roan, and we’re here in Washington. We’re going to keep you updated on this situation, we’ve also got an explo….whaja got Chris
Chris:.. The Beltway at 395 near the Pentagon has been shut down.
Andrea: The Beltway near the Pentagon at b395 has been shut down obviously because of what you’re seeing right here on your screen, a plane…hitting the west side of the building, a gapping hole there, and near the heliport, this, after, two planes, struck the twin towers of the World Trade center, reports of a portion of the second tower that was hit at the World Trade center appears to have collapsed. What you are looking at is right here at the Pentagon. Let’s recap, Mike…
Mike: Alright…what are we going do?..(10:14) hold on…these
Andrea:...these are raw footage coming back, that’s our reporter there on the scene who will be giving us stories in just a few minutes, but people who have been evacuated from the Pentagon building after that building, the west side of that building was struck by a plane, not long after the twin attacks in New York City on the World Trade Center. An Associated Press reporter says he saw the tail end of a large airliner plunge into the Pentagon building. What we know, New York City is on a terrorist alert, and here in Washington, the White House, White House, all of the White House, the old Executive office building, Blair Mansion, other major government institutions including Treasury and the State department have also been evacuated…. (anticipatory pause) amid…ah, credible terrorist threats.
Dave: (10:03) 10:04am OK Tell them to come to me please.
Mike: Alright, Dave, go ahead, take it.
Dave: (11:08) 10:05am (first shot of Dave filmed from center divider. Lasts 2 seconds.) Thank you. All right, we’ve got some eyewitnesses, Mike, (pointing him away) why don’t you stay on and show the pictures over here and I’ll talk to the eyewitnesses. You can look at what is going on, the fire fighting efforts, we have a couple of people who were in the Pentagon at the time. Tell me what happened.
Unnamed Men: We were sitting at our desks having a meeting and there was a large shudder, or there was a shudder of the building, sound of a large thud, right, you could hear the impact, a large concussion, like an explosion, and the air would be, like a concussion, we didn’t know there was an explosion we just looked at each other and knew that something catastrophic had happened but we had no idea what it was. People began to evacuating immediately and, ah, and it wasn’t until we were outside that we realized what had happened.
Dave: How far away from you were you when it happened?
Unnamed Men: Well, if you divide the building into fifths, five pie slice, which is the way the Pentagon renovation is scheduled, this is in the first wedge, the new wedge which was just finished and we were in the next one over.
(12:05) 10:06am Dave: (pause) Did you see any injured other than the ones that were out here that we saw?
UN Men: I didn’t see any injuries.
Dave: Did you see what size plane it was when you got outside?
UN Men: No. Just by walking up here now ah, along the road there are pieces of aircraft, spread all the way up the road, um, at least a third of a mile from the impact site.
Dave: What goes on, can you tell us what would have to be in those offices, generally speaking, I know you can’t go into great detai.l
Unnamed pair: We’re looking at the E-ring of the Pentagon, and that’s where ah, ah, the more senior officials are, that area, I believe, is where the army deputy chief of staff of operations and ah, the army deputy chief of staff for personnel’s offices are.
(12:41) 10:06am (Firetruck #345 passes in front.)
Dave: We are looking at here I believe I don’t have a monitor but I believe but one of the injured being taken away by Arlington Fire and rescue. They’ve been on the scene since a few minutes after this happened, and I mentioned before, but the firefighters and police officers on the scene have all been warned, keep a close look at the skies, watch for a possible second attack as what happened in New York. Mike and Andrea.
Mike: (13:04) 10:07am Alright, we’re going to go to Rick Armstrong, he’s one of our photojournalists he’s down on the Mall, Rick?
Rick: Hi Buck.
Mike: What ya got?
Rick: Umm, not a whole lot other than the fact this city is shut down, I’m at the base of the Washington Monument where the Park Police officer have told me they’ve shut down all the monuments, they’re evacuating all the buildings including the White House. Ah, I can look across the river at the Pentagon and its incredible smoke plume. Emergency vehicles going in every direction, looks like ah, secret service vehicles, fire vehicles, police vehicles, ah 25 years here, I’ve never seen anything like this.
Andrea: What’s the reaction of people there, mostly tourists I’m sure and some working in the area?
Rick: To be honest with you I’ve talked to a lot, a lot of tourists and they’re all…what do you expect, they’re all in shock, it’s, it’s unbelievable, it’s hideous.
Mike: I can imagine what it’s like down there. We’re sitting here, and every plane we keep an eye on. I imagine everybody throughout the city, you see a plane…
Andrea: You look up at the sky!
Rick: I’ve had no luck making communication except when I’m at a pay phone, the cell phones are down (right, right) the are down, and I don’t know why.
Andrea: I think we know why.
Rick: I decided to come to this location, I’m with Frank Herzog we were on a sports story, we decided to come to this location because this is a very likely spot for an act of terrorism, sad as it is to say that (ya) so we’re just kinda keeping our eyes and ears open here.
Mike: Alright let’s go to Lauren Ashburn now, USAToday she’s a… Lauren…
Lauren: Frank? Oh Buck…
Andrea: No this is Andrea and Buck.
Lauren: Hi Andrea, Hi Buck. I am on the 22nd floor of the USAToday tower, one building overlooking this immense plume of smoke, the e-ring of the Pentagon; you can’t even see it from this distance. There is a helicopter hovering over the site taking pictures and taking a look at what is happening inside I’m looking down on traffic which is completely grid locked on Route 50, heading out of the city, heading into the city on route 395, into the city traffic is moving along quite quickly and we have heard several fire trucks and EMS trucks pass us by here I’m looking right at the ground right now, at the ramp that would take you to route 110, they have blocked that off, there is a police officer standing right in the middle of the street, um right now.
Mike: (15:35) 10:09am Thank you very much I just…
Andrea: (15:38) Let’s go back to Dave who is at the Pentagon site.
Dave: 10:09am I just heard another explosion of some sort. It could be a secondary explosion of some sort something happened but we just heard a loud pop just as you were coming to me it seemed to be on the east of here I can’t tell what it is, it might be something that is secondary to this because we’ve had a number of small explosions after the fire occurred.
Andrea: Dave we understood there was construction in the area that was struck by the plane and is on fire, is the area that was under construction so maybe there weren’t a lot of people in that area.
Dave: There is, ya, towards the south end of this area there are construction trailers I can say that, but I can’t tell you for sure if this area would be sparsely populated, we’re actually 16:23 being asked to move back by Virginia State Police a little bit, we’re going to try and keep this location as much as possible. The reason they asked us to move back is because of course they are concerned about any secondary explosions. I can tell you from my experience as a fire-fighter there still is a great deal of fire inside the Pentagon, by the smoke that is coming out of there, I’m sure that firefighters are inside there making sure first that they can get everybody out that they can and then try and attack the fire inside they also have had fire on the outside that probably involved some sort of airplane fuel, that’s why it burned so, so…it’s still burning in fact, on the south end of the outside near those construction trailers. Again, I can’t tell you much more than a loud pop a few minutes ago that seemed a little bit different, a little bit different, than then um, um the ones we heard earlier, which were on the outside they could have been tires or something else. We’ve also been watching as they take another man to the hospital and it looks like it’s going to be a medivac and from what I can tell it looks like he’s burned there seems to be a burn sheet on top of him, the medics are taking him to the US Park police helicopter, eagle helicopter. I think we’ll try and get a shot of that over here on Washington Blvd. The eagle helicopter from the park police is landing taking this man to the hospital, from my vantage point it looks like he has burns, we also besides Arlington Fire and Rescue, see some doctors, what appear to be some doctors on the scene, we’re not sure if they’re military or not, they seem to be helping with the injured, We can see Virginia State police, VSP are again trying to move us back but I think we have stalled them off for the moment . Again this is the e-ring of the Pentagon. Oh. hold on a second, Mike and Andrea we’re seeing a second man who clearly is burned who is being sent to that medivac helicopter as you can see this is the second person we can confirm who has very serious burns.
Andrea: Yes we can see his hands being burned.
Dave: Can you take it back for a second we need to coordinate something here.
Andrea: Sure We are just getting across the wire again what preceded the Pentagon plane crash was the horrific destruction of the…two planes crashing into the World Trade Center, which you see in the picture on the right hand side of your screen, a witness said he saw bodies falling from the 110 story tower and people jumping out there are no confirmed casualties or injuries but you know looking at this…
Mike: This is tape earlier.
Andrea: This is tape from earlier this morning.
Mike:…when the jet plowed in. Now we’re getting word that one of the World Trade center towers in NYC has collapsed. (pause) It’s collapsed, the structural damage from the two planes plowing in.
Andrea: Also to let you know, because of what has happened, the Federal Aviation Administration has shut down all airplane traffic nationwide, nothing coming in nothing going out. BWI will allow planes land that were in the pattern to land but after that, everything will be shut down after that, we’re in a lockdown is basically what it is. All government buildings, all major government buildings have been evacuated, we heard from our, our, crews on the scene that the Pentagon has been evacuated, monuments and museums have been evacuated. Let’s go to Frank Herzog who is near one of the most visible monuments in the city, the Washington monument, Frank what do you see, what do you hear?
Frank Herzog: I’m on the west grounds of the Washington monument the area has been completely evacuated by Park Police and I think I can answer Dave Statter’s question about that secondary explosion, it wasn’t an explosion, that was the sonic boom of jet fighters that were scrambled out of Andrews Air Force base, we believe. They just circled the Washington area flying from the east out to the west and they were in a hurry and they were high up in the air, so jet fighters, at least one possibly two, were scrambled probably as a precautionary measure, needless to say. Downtown Washington DC, except for the vehicular traffic, which is bumper to bumper, the rest of the city has been shut down. It looks like a Sunday morning here, the mall is absolutely empty, Park police came through about 10 minutes ago and evacuated the entire area and told tourists to go somewhere else. 20:26 (begins pan to chink in building) but I can tell you right now that at least one or perhaps two jet fighters have been scrambled and they are patrolling the skies over Washington.
Mike: Frank Herzog, thanks very much. Let me just read you the lead, the Associated Press lead, it just came out of New York…first of all, let’s check in with Dave Statter at the Pentagon, Dave.
(20:42) 10:15am Dave: Ah! oh it collapsed right now, as you can see, I assume you’re taking our picture, I do not have a monitor, but right now we just had a middle section of the e-ring of the Pentagon collapse from the amount of fire and destruction from this, so obviously there was a great deal of damage here. It just collapsed we don’t know who was inside or how many people were inside, you heard somebody, one of the people who were inside this e-ring of the Pentagon has a great many officials, so if somebody was planning something this might have been the place if they wanted to get senior officials. um um again most of the fire on the outside of the building has been extinguished there are still some spot fires on the outside of the building, and still from what I can see a great deal of fire on the inside, so now you have a gaping hole on the west side of the Pentagon here at Washington Blvd. And this collapse just happened it was not an explosion, a secondary explosion, this apparently the damage from a great deal of fire and the structural damage from the plane crash.
Mike: Any word yet on casualties?
Dave: Other than the two people we saw Medivaced who had serious burns um I can not, I can’t confirm any others, they’ve been working on people but we don’t know what’s inside that building to be honest with you.
Andrea: So Dave
Dave: Certainly anybody in those windows or in those offices by those windows, you have to be very, very concerned about right now.
Mike: Alright, Dave Statter, reporting from the Pentagon. Here you can see from Dave’s camera shot several people being escorted out of the Pentagon. The Pentagon is being evacuated as is the White House, the US Capital…
Andrea:…most monuments, museums, um, the city basically, as you’ve heard from Frank Herzog and from photojournalist Rick Armstrong near the Washington monument, closed down almost, everything is closed down.
Mike: As you can see a portion of the Pentagon has collapsed. This happened after a jet apparently deliberately plowed into the Pentagon.
Andrea: (22:30) 10:16am We have Daniel McAdams on the phone. He is an eyewitness, Daniel, good morning. What did you see and where are you?
Daniel: I'm here in Arlington just off Columbia Pike probably about two, two-and-a-half miles from the Pentagon, and we were sitting in our living room having coffee ah, and it sounded like a military jet fly over, that they do sometimes, you know very, very low altitude flyover and then just a couple of seconds later we heard a massive boom! All of our doors and windows shook. We went outside and then looked out the window and then saw a plume of smoke.
(23:08) Alright Thank you Daniel very, much. Let’s go back to Dave Slatter, Dave what do you have?
Dave: (agitated) 9:17am Ah oh, they’re evacuating us right now, they believe another plane—this could be a rumor—evacuating everybody, possibility of another plane coming in this direction, this is a major evacuation, again it could all be a rumor but the FBI is evacuating everybody out of this area. I’ve got to go because, you know what, they won’t let me stay here.
Andrea: Be safe be safe. And we heard from Frank Herzog that boom that Dave thought he heard before, was ah air force jet scrambling high up in the sky, on alert, ah if there is something else coming in we hope they get it first. We’re looking again at the Pentagon where an aircraft crashed into the Pentagon this morning causing what we have just seen a gaping hole in the E-ring of the Pentagon. Evacuations, we have seen transports, burn victims, we do not know about any casualties, we don’t know if everyone was evacuated from the Pentagon before that collapse, we are watching, as you just heard Dave Statter say, they are evacuating and moving back all of the news crews, getting people as far away from that building as possible because they thought they spotted another plane in the area, we do not have any confirmation on that but we will keep you updated.
Mike: The Federal Aviation Administration has shut down all air traffic nationwide. This following the aircraft that crashed into the Pentagon, two jets, two planes crashed into the World Trade towers up in New York City.
Andrea: President Bush said today we have “a national tragedy” upon learning of the two planes crashing into the World Trade center. He said he would be returning immediately to Washington and ah, the President has ordered a full-scale investigation to hunt down the folks who quote “committed this act.” And again, what you’re looking at, within an hour of the twin-towers explosions, an aircraft crashed at the Pentagon as well. The White House and other major government buildings, Treasury Department, Defense have all been evacuated and airplane traffic, in and out, all around the United States, is closed down.
Mike: Let’s go back to Lauren Ashburn who’s in the USAToday building in Rosslyn.
Lauren: (25:29) 10:19am Yes, good morning Buck and Andrea, I’m taking a look right now at the Pentagon. There are one, two, three, four helicopters I can see from the vista here in the USAToday tower one building, overlooks all of Washington from Arlington Virginia I can see one helicopter is on its way, it looks like to me, to the Washington Hospital Center, it’s attempting a landing right now. I’m sure, there are two others following in that direction at this point. I’m looking down at traffic. Traffic is at a standstill leaving the city. There are hardly anybody, hardly any cars going into the city via route 50, traffic is backed up over the Memorial bridge, and I am looking down at police officers who are telling people to get off and turn around as they’re coming in off of 395.
Andrea: Yes Lauren we had heard that the Beltway near 395, which is that Pentagon exit is closed down so if you’re leaving the home, or going in that direction—don’t. Go the other way, just stay put just stay home.
Andrea: Yes Lauren.
Lauren: I can see the sky, I know you had talked about possibly another plane from somewhere coming, I have a vista almost 180 degrees here across the horizon and I can’t see one single solitary plane the only thing I can see are those helicopters I talked to you about. The one helicopter has landed it looks like to me at Washington Hospital Center.
Mike: We have on the phone now Daryl Jenkins, Mr. Jenkins, you’re an airlines security with what organization?
Jenkins: Washington University Aviation Institute.
Mike: Alright sir. You’ve seen what happened this morning. Give me your read.
Jenkins: Well, our lives will never be the same again, this will change everything we do in this city and everywhere else around here. This is the day we will all remember until the day we die now. This is, I can’t even imagine anything more worse than what’s going on right now. The terrorist is unspeakable.
Mike: The ah, I mean basically what we probably have is three hijackings and then the terrorists plowing into the World Trade Center and the Pentagon.
Jenkins: Yes, yes, that’s correct. And ah it’s the enormity that somebody would do something this awful to innocent people there’s no cause that can justify this. Everything about aviation will change and even the Pentagon was under attack and there’s smoke coming from this so whatever airports have been in the past, in terms of nightmarish getting through, the nightmare is only beginning because travel will become unspeakably difficult now.
Mike: What happened to airport security sir?
Jenkins: I have no idea how any of this happened we have no details at this time. I’m sure though that all resources will be brought to bear on this ah in the future getting through any airport will be very, very difficult. It will not be pleasant ever again.
Andrea: I think you said it best at the beginning; our lives will never be the same again. Everything will change after this.
Jenkins: Everything will change in this city in just about everything I do in commercial aviation.
Mike: You know Mr. Jenkins, I can remember, I can remember years back the DC police chief Maurice Polona, Jerry Wilson, Isaac Pull, they all said someday terrorism is going to come to the United States.
Mike: Today it did.
Jenkins: Today it did, and like we said earlier our lives will never be the same. (Mike sighs) I assume right now we are under attack and our nation’s at war with some foreign body.
Andrea: Alright Daryl, thank you.
Mike: Thank you very much.
Andrea: Speaking of how everything is going to change at airports around the world, Gary Reals is at National Airport by phone, Gary what is going on there?
Gary Reals: (29:26) 10:23am Well Andrea it is, I hate to use the cliché but it truly is like a scene out of a movie here, the dark acrid smoke wafting over from the Pentagon has shrouded the terminal area here at National Airport—lightly, not a, a dense fog here at the airport, but a light fog nonetheless, and there has been, we’ve been at the airport proper now for about 20 to 25 minutes, there is still a constant, ah stream of people evacuating the entire airport. Of course As you’ve been reporting, airport operations around the United States have been shut down very abruptly and National Airport is certainly in the thick of that, ah there are still at this hour hundreds and hundreds of people evacuating streaming by foot,
30:12 by foot, everybody’s walking, there is a heavy security presence here, needless to say, and of course the people who are here and are leaving here can see very clearly the cause of this and that is the plane crash into the Pentagon, and the smoke and they are getting a feel and taste of it.
Andrea: 10:24am Alright, Thank you Gary, Gary Reals reporting.
Mike: Hold on one second, the State Department has been evacuated after a possible explosion or a fire, a senior governmental official speaking under a condition of anonymity said, the incident appears connected with the two plane attacks at the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, according to this source, quoting now, “something happened at the state department, we don’t know what yet, we hear it might have been a plane.” This…Ah… anybody, Frank or Rick or Lauren, can anybody see anything over at the State Department? (long pause)
Dave: Yes I’m here.
Andrea: Do you hear anything about the State Department?
Dave: No I, ah, I know that there was concern here, let me —describe, what happened when we had to rush off a little while ago (yes) there was concern, and we don’t like to put rumors on the air and I’m not sure you can call this a rumor, but the FBI on the scene at the Pentagon told everybody to leave the area because there is concern of a hijacked plane that might be coming in this direction.
Mike: (31:31) Hold on…Hey Dave? (Yes.) We just got a bulletin from the Associated Press “A car bomb explodes outside of the State Department.” Being attributed to senior law enforcement officials, again, a car bomb.
Andrea: Let’s go to Frank Herzog who is outside of the State Department, “Frank, what have you seen?” (pause)
Mike: “Alright we’ll hold on for Frank.”
Andrea: Frank had been down at the area at the Washington monument…
Mike: (very agitated) “Let me tell you if you’re just waking up, this is not a dream. This is not some B movie, you’re watching.”
Andrea: “And this is not some Tom Clancey scenario, this is the real thing.”
Mike: This morning about 8:45 a plane crashed into the World Trade Center in New York, 18 minutes later another plane, apparently a hijacked jet, out of Boston bound for LA…crashed into the World… you see the picture right there…that’s the second explosion when this American Airlines jet, (32:29) apparently hijacked plowed into the World Trade Center, then about an hour ago, there was an explosion at the Pentagon, a plane plowed into the Pentagon at the heliport.
Andrea: 10:27am Look at this.
Andrea: One of the towers we had reported that one of the towers had collapsed, here is proof…
Mike: (angry) Frank Herzog, where are ya!?
Frank: I’m still at the Washington Monument, I’m looking at the State Department.
(32:45) Andrea: What do you see?
Frank: Nothing has happened there it looks all quiet. I am getting reports from park police that another plane was hijacked out of Pittsburgh, that’s the word they’re getting, another plane is hijacked out of Pittsburgh, which may explain why those two fighter jets were scrambled out of here, about 15 minutes ago. But so far, the State Department is quiet, there is no indication there is anything going on in the building, all we hear here is the constant wail of sirens here in downtown Washington.
Mike: Again to confirm what Dave Statter told us a few minutes ago, Pentagon officials are evacuating people from the area of the Pentagon fearing another plane could be in route. Frank Herzog has been told by a US park police officer that there’s been another hi-jacking, this plane out of Pittsburgh, apparently we gotta, they’re scrambling out of Andrews Air force Base.
Andrea: other major government institutions State and Treasury were being evacuated already even before we heard about something being possibly directed specifically at the State Department after the explosion at the Pentagon (pause) 33:56 Again we are looking at two pictures, the one on the left of your screen is the Pentagon where a section of 34:02 (goes to full screen) that building has collapsed struck by a aircraft. This is New York City where one of the twin towers collapsed after it was struck by aircraft, one of the 110 story towers.
Mike: Emilio Elano(?) he’s a terrorism expert over at American University, sir are you with us here? Emilio? I think we just lost him, the phones in this area, everybody is on a cell phone.
Andrea: This is live (34:31) 10:28am of the second tower, we believe, the second tower, of the World Trade center, just collapsed, that is what you’re looking at live.
Andrea: You can’t see very well through the smoke but it is obvious that those two large structures that we saw just a little while ago aren’t there. We’re going to pick up live coverage from our sister station in New York WCBS 34:57 let’s listen… (New York …now reduced to a pile of smoke and ash…. )
(Total time in New York 2:25 minutes.)
(37:22) (first time seeing the pair behind their desk) Andrea: Welcome back to Eyewitness news. We want to report that Mark Brady of Prince George County Fire and EMS they want ALL Prince George County all personnel report to your duty stations regardless of schedual they want all pgc ems personnel to report to their duty stations.
Mike: (37:43) 10:31am One of our photojournalists, Denny Bligh has just called in, he says there is at least 15 people injured at the Pentagon.
Andrea: We saw the tower, both towers now, collapse at the World Trade Center and from American Airlines, they are saying that a plane that crashed into the World Trade Center was one of theirs, Flight 11 from Boston to Los Angeles, that was American Airlines Flight 11 from Boston to Los Angeles was the plane that crashed into the World Trade Center, this AP advisory is from American Airlines.
(38:16) Mike: Anthony Garrett was inside the Pentagon when the plane slammed into the area near the heliport, the E-ring, Mr. Garrett?
Mike: You OK?
Anthony: I’m fine, yes, thank you.
Mike: Tell me what you heard, and what you saw.
Tony: Ah, excuse me, I was just over there meeting with ah some of my customers, I’m a defense contractor, and ahm, we were standing around watching a CNN report on the World Trade Center incident when we felt a jolt, something along the lines I suspect of a minor tremor, and then a strong gust of air went through the hallways. Immediately after that, omeone in the hallways started yelling get out of the building now.
Mike: (softly) Panic inside there?
Tony: Excuse me?
Mike: Was there, obviously—was there panic inside there?
Tony: Yes, it got fairly chaotic quickly as everyone was trying to run down the narrow corridors there on the D-ring, to get to an exit.
Mike: (sigh) Do you believe this Mr. Garrett?
Tony: It’s certainly ah, of great concern, I guess.
Mike: That’s putting it mildly, I guess.
Andrea: You were talking about ah, panic, we want to go to Bruce LaChane, and there is panic canimagine downtown. Bruce can you hear us?
Bruce: Yes Andrea, I would describe it as kind of quiet chaos here. Many, many of the buildings have been evacuated in downtown, and there are thousands of people out on the street trying to figure out how to get home, there are long lines next to the parking garages as people try and get their cars and get out of downtown. Around the executive mansion, people evacuated from the White House grounds and they’re setting up a rather wide perimeter around there, at least down as far down as 15th St. on one side there. The uniformed secret service officers have been putting out yellow tape and refusing to let anybody get near the White House / Treasury Department complex. In that area, a lot of people who were working on the White House grounds and in the surrounding office buildings are walking around kind of with shocked looks on their faces. A lot of rumors flying around here, so far no specific incidences downtown but ah, many emergency crews running around and ah, heading in various directions trying to deal with anything that might crop up. I actually saw two paramedic units from Walter Reede Hospital coming all the way down here downtown to kind of station themselves and prepare for whatever might happen. My advice for people who are watching and who might have business downtown: don’t! Do not come down here. It is absolute grid lock down here and they’re doing their best to keep everybody out and the streets cleared and its been very difficult proposition.
Mike: Bruce LaChane thank you please stay in touch. We’re getting word too, CNN is reporting that, as we told you Capital Hill, the Capital has been evacuated.
(41:15) Mike: 10:35am Now CNN is reporting that members of Congress have been taken to a secure location, members of Congress have been taken to a secure location for their protection.
Andrea: This is unbelievable.
Mike: The United States basically has been attacked. The U.S. has been attacked by terrorists this morning.
Andrea: Wall Street is shut down, the nearby World Financial Center which houses NYMEX was evacuated, the American Stock Exchange, the New York Mercantile Exchange, the Chicago Board of Trade has suspended all…(tape ends)