WTC Attacks: What would've happened if there was only 1 plane?

Would the 2nd tower still be standing? Would it be in use? Would the 1st tower even have collapsed?

I imagine there would have been a lot of damage from falling debris when the other tower collapsed.

I don’t believe I’ve seen any information that indicates that either tower’s “predicament” had any effect on the other tower. My understanding is that the towers collapsed due to the metal floor joists bending in the severe heat, and eventually the top of the building fell downward and pancaked the upper levels onto the lower ones, starting a chain reaction that could not be stopped.

Would it still be in use? I don’t know. I’m sure repairs would have taken quite a while if it hadn’t been badly enough damaged to have to be torn down.

I’d wager the second tower would still stand, but be closed off for months until it was certified as safe.

A single tower would look a little strange, don’t you think? Anyone want to photoshop out one of the towers, so we can all decide if it’s as weird as I think it is?

I wonder if they would have rebuilt the collapsed one, though that might seem disrespectful. Or torn down the standing one, but that doesn’t make much sense either. Hm…

Fascinating OP. Until someone can photoshop it, there’s this. You still have to use your imagination, but this almost looks like a single tower.

Other smaller building of the WTC complex crumbled too (WTC 7 ?) and they weren’t hit directly. I think the second tower might have to be checked out and made safe.

I remember the towers kind of crashed “inward” and straight down… not sideways. So actually hitting the other tower might not have happened.

I put this in IMHO because there probably is no factual answer. What led to the OP was my wondering whether the 2nd tower would have been deemed uninhabitable. If this happened, they’d have to knock it down without causing any additional damage to the surrounding buildings. How difficult would this have been to do? Would they do this piece by piece, or just create a controlled implosion like they do with smaller buildings?

It needed to be both to cause the maximum panic and tragedy. The towers went down because of bombs strategically placed in them,not from the fires,which blew outside the buildings, and the buildings were made to withstand much higher temperatures.

I remember them going up when I was a really little kid. Pieces were lifted up by climbing cranes and they would have had to be lifted down too. It was well-built and probably would have stood when the other tower collapsed, but all the dust and debris would have rendered it uninhabitable. Hell, the Deutsche Bank building across the street got a major gash in it, mold and asbestos are all over the place, and they’re finally tearing it down now. WTC 1 and 2 were very very close together.


You lost me at bombs.

Let’s not go off on a tangent, please…

Anyway, WTC1 DID stand after 2 fell. And wasn’t that a horrible sight for those of us in NYC watching live. Unnatural, terrible thing. I think it would not have fallen because the buildings around it that fell were so much smaller than the remaining tower and they’d been built to withstand mild earthquakes. But like I said, the windows would have been gone and the debris (some of which blew over to Brooklyn) would have made tearing it down later very probable. It would have been taken down safely in sections rather than being imploded, same way it was built. But since WTC1 fell nearly half an hour after WTC2 fell, there’s no reason to believe it would have fallen anyway without the fires weakening its steel.

Great Buildings site entry.

Egg, I’d lay off smoking your running socks. Bad mojo, dude.

Dumb question, but how far apart were the two towers? I can’t really tell from any pictures. Like, 50 feet? 200 feet? Half a block? Just curious.

I was never clear on why exactly WTC 7 collapsed; was it hit by falling debris? Shocks from the two towers falling? What happened?

:smack: :rolleyes: :smack: :rolleyes: :smack: :rolleyes:
I won’t even ask for a cite, 'cause you’ll just link to some raving looney.

An this comes from a 99er who turns into a Raving Looney every time he has 7 cups of coffee inside of 4 hours. :o

The plan on this page suggests the distance between the towers was slightly less than the side of each tower. It doesn’t have a scale, but the towers were apparently 207 feet on each side. (cite near bottom of Chapter 1 - The WTC Report. )

Managed to dig up a better figure for the distance between the towers: 118 feet

(Cool memorial design, BTW)

On the whole “1 Tower Falls” thing…what did the heat from the burning rubble do to the foundations?

If enough of the foundation was heat-damaged, I suspect that we’d have to have pulled down the second tower ourselves.

7 collapsed from fire. There was a huge fuel-oil tank in the middle of it so that the building, which included some federal agencies and the city’s crisis managment center, uh, could be electrically self-sufficient in the event of an emergency. Oops.

Assuming a single plane which hit the north tower, we can suppose the south tower would have stayed up but experienced substantial damage.
To give an idea of what we’d be talking about, when the north tower fell, there was substantial damage caused not only to 7 WTC, which was across Vesey Street, but to the Verizon building next door to 7 WTC, to 6 and 5 WTC, which were adjacent to it and to the Winter Garden at the World Financial Center across West St. When the south tower fell, it damaged 1 Bankers Trust Plaza such the the building remains uninhabitable (it was complicated by mold which set in after the event), 4 WTC and 3 WTC, which was the Marriott Hotel there (both adjacent to the south tower) and to St. Paul’s Church, next to BT Plaza. Other buildings in the area, including 1 and 2 World Financial Center, received lesser damage.

Here is a picture of the Marriott, 3 WTC, after the south tower fell and immediately before the north tower fell (the photographer was killed in the second collapse, probably just a few minutes after this photgraph was taken). For perspective, the BT building is the black building in the center background of the photo, the north tower is out of sight but basically attached to the hotel at the left side and 1 (or 2, I forget which) World Financial Center would have been immediately behind the photographer. The pieces of the superstructure which are lodged into the ground are actually in the middle of West St., a hundred feet or so from where the nearest wall of the south tower was.