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Hijacked Planes Demolish World Trade Centre; Plane Attacks Pentagon, Another Crashes In Pennsylvania; Thousands Feared Dead

September 12, 2001 – 1.30am AEST

9/11The two towers of the World Trade Centre in New York have collapsed after being hit by separate hijacked planes. In Washington, a plane has crashed into the Pentagon causing a major collapse. Another aircraft, apparently en route from New Jersey to California, has crashed outside Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

All Federal buildings in Washington, including the White House, have been evacuated. In the confusion that now reigns throughout the US, it was earlier reported that another plane was unaccounted for and was heading for Washington. The FAA has grounded all aircraft throughout America. International flights are being diverted to Canada.

The Prime Minister, John Howard, is staying at the Willard Hotel, a few blocks from the White House. He is reported to be safe. His trip to New York, scheduled for today, will almost certainly not proceed.

The attacks began at 8.42am, local time, 10.42pm AEST, when a plane flew into one of the World Trade Centre towers. About 18 minutes later, a second plane ploughed into the second tower. Shortly after 9.00am (11.00pm AEST) another plane crashed into the Pentagon building in Washington.

Around an hour later, one of the World Trade Centre towers imploded and collapsed. A few minutes later, the second tower collapsed. New York is enveloped in smoke and it is not clear how much of the towers remain, although it appears that about 50 floors in each building have collapsed.

American news websites are almost impossible to access from Australia at this time. CNN is displaying a single page on its website:

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