NIST Moves Ahead With WTC Investigation

Amidst its two-year investigation of the World Trade Center tragedy, the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) solicited input from industry experts, namely architects and engineers, at a recent public hearing.

07/10/2002


Amidst its two-year investigation of the World Trade Center tragedy, the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) solicited input from industry experts, namely architects and engineers, at a recent public hearing.

The main claim posited by industry experts was that fireproofing failures—and not the impact of the plane crashes—was the main cause of the towers' collapse.

The federal panel was also told that the North Tower, which fell in 104 minutes, had 1 1/2-inch thick fireproofing, and the South Tower, which only lasted 56 minutes, had 3/4-inch thick fireproofing.

Among the goals of these hearings and investigations are:

  • To determine why and how the World Trade Center buildings collapsed after the initial impact of the aircrafts.

  • To analyze the fire protection, evacuation, occupant's behavior and emergency response during the disaster.

  • To identify building codes and standards that need to be revised.

Ultimately, NIST is also seeking to provide guidelines for improving the way buildings are designed, constructed, maintained and used.





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