What were you surveying on 9-11-2001?Posted by Wendell on September 11, 2019 at 3:52 pm
Were you working on 9-11? What were you doing? Where were you?
I was working at a great company called MMLA in Tucson (interestingly, I’m in Tucson right now). We managed to find a TV to watch news reports. It didn’t take long for the owners to send us home. I don’t remember what project I was working on but it was most likely a right-of-way boundary project somewhere.
How about you?
- 42 Replies
- MemberSeptember 11, 2019 at 4:05 pm
Grid-line layout and monitoring of a mixed use mid-rises in Seattle’s Belltown neighborhood. We worked a full day.
- MemberSeptember 11, 2019 at 4:18 pm
Just woke up, turned on the TV and saw the second plane hit. After that, I went to class. I honestly can’t recall anything else from that day, except seeing that second plane hit.
- MemberSeptember 11, 2019 at 4:20 pm
I was staking curb and gutter for a road widening project. Was in the office when the towers were hit, watching news reports on the web while preparing the stakeout data. I was listening to the radio while staking in the field when I heard about the Pentagon being hit and flight 93 going down in Pennsylvania. I remember how quiet the skies were that afternoon.
- MemberSeptember 11, 2019 at 4:30 pm
Had an appointment at 9AM (CDT) to meet a pipeline rep at a new development project east of town here. After an hour he never showed. I was sitting in a pasture twiddling my thumbs (no I don’t listen to the radio in the truck). I had a company cell phone and couldn’t get any service. I finally headed back in and stopped by my house to use the phone and saw the news on the TV. Was going to fly somewhere in couple of days and that didn’t happen. Took me five years to even GET on a plane after that.
- MemberSeptember 11, 2019 at 4:30 pm
Working on an Overpass project. I was employed with the City’s surveying department at the time. Watched the first plane hit on our TV at work, and 20 minutes or so the second one. Left the office, and after arriving on site, realized we forgot the radios. Went and got them, watched the first tower fall while we lingered at the office. Went back to site, and that’s when a co worker noticed “Look up, have you seen one plane yet today?”
- MemberSeptember 11, 2019 at 4:37 pm
I was in Lake George working solo on a proposed sediment retention basin topo. The site was down in a deep hole along a stream. At lunch time, I crawled out and put the radio on in the truck. Noticed the local morning wiseguy DJ’s were still on. They had a habit of once a year or so doing a bogus story like a lion escaped or something crazy (war of the worlds stuff). I thought this was what they were doing and turned the radio off saying that was a terrible prank/story. Went back down in the hole and the more I thought about it the more upset I got. It really started bugging me that they (wiseguy DJ’S) would do such a thing. No cell service so climbed back out to try another radio station. When reality hit me I called my wife, packed everything up and went home. Picked the kids up at school on the way home as they were let out early.
Sidenote: About a year before 9/11, a contingent of NYFD search and rescue guys came upstate to talk at a local firefighters funeral who died in the line of service. Three of those speakers didn’t make it.
- MemberSeptember 11, 2019 at 4:42 pm
I was in my office in the morning doing some drafting, my wife called to let me know what happened. That afternoon I tried to do a boundary survey in Ridgewood, NJ. From the ridge I was on you could see the smoke from the fire in southern Manhattan, 20 miles to the south of me. The fighter jets flying air cover over New York and New Jersey kept jamming the radio on my 5600, so I gave up and went home.
One of my daughter’s friends lost her father that day, he was an engineer for the management company at the World Trade Center, he was last seen helping evacuate the towers. She was 11 at the time.
- MemberSeptember 11, 2019 at 4:47 pm
Sidenote No. 2
As a result of 911, NYS implemented a new ID program for licensed professionals were they issue you a picture ID (similar to a drivers license) showing your credentials. Meant to be used in/on active disaster situations were you may be rendering professional service.
- MemberSeptember 11, 2019 at 4:51 pm
I had scheduled a field meeting on an island in the Suisun Marsh area (California Delta region) to scope out a mapping project and took one of my crew chiefs with me. We were meeting the landowner who was taking us out by boat. We knew the planes had hit, but had no access to a TV, so we had no visual to grasp the magnitude. Just before we arrived at the meeting location I got a call letting us know that the Governor had dismissed all state employees, but we decided to continue. I called my wife and she was so distraught she could barely talk, but again, without a visual, I couldn’t comprehend how horrific the events were.
We boated to the island, which was not far from Travis Air Force Base. I had been in that area many times and it was the norm to hear aircraft almost constantly, but that morning the sky was eerily silent. It wasn’t until I got home much later that day that I saw the images and joined my wife in the grief and disbelief.
- MemberSeptember 11, 2019 at 4:52 pm
I was coordinating the field surveys of hydraulic structures and cross-sections as part of the H&H portion of FEMA’s Tropical Storm Allison Recovery Project.
- MemberSeptember 11, 2019 at 5:18 pm
We were headed to an ALTA of a manufacturing facility that would take several days. Had stopped in at a little grocery to pick up drinks and snacks for the day. The owner had a small TV. He was glued to it as we arrived. He told us that a few minutes earlier one of the twin towers had been hit by a large plane and was on fire. We watched with him for a few minutes and saw the second tower being hit. We put in a standard day but noted the absence of planes in the air. Witnessed people going nuts attempting to buy every gallon of gasoline possible, like it was the end of the world, and the only way to survive was to drive as far as possible from where they were.
- MemberSeptember 11, 2019 at 5:29 pm
Flew out to Vegas 2 weeks after. Interesting fight to say the least. National Guard all over the airports. Never seen Vegas so empty. The only people anywhere were hotel security folks and law enforcement.Mike
- MemberSeptember 11, 2019 at 5:54 pm
I put in an almost normal work day – not normal because everybody was checking the news all the time. The car happened to be low on gasoline, but no station was without a long line so I waited to the next day. That next day I worked my first concert at the arts venue, which was VERY lightly attended..
- MemberSeptember 11, 2019 at 5:56 pm
As I remember it, I had taken some time off because my 76 year old Mother was here for a visit from NY. We were just hanging out planning the day, when one of our daughters called with the news. My Mom was supposed to go home the next day, which didn??t happen of course. She assumed the worst, that she wouldn??t be able to get home for weeks, we actually went to the airport the next day, which was pretty scary, with armed guards everywhere. Talking to someone in person was the way to go. I got Mom on a flight, I think it was on Friday (?), she was very relieved. I still choke up, watching the footage of the event.
- MemberSeptember 11, 2019 at 6:06 pm
We went to Disneyland about 9 weeks after the attacks and it was virtually empty. We have pictures of my family on Main Street with nobody else in the pictures. My daughters literally stayed on rides after they went through the cycle to ride again. It was very eerie, but they rode anything and everything they wanted to as many times as they wanted to without ever waiting in a line.
- MemberSeptember 11, 2019 at 6:17 pm
In a board room that had the largest flat screen I had ever seen. Probably 10 feet across. Meeting about the first permanent RTK base station network in the metro. They turned it on after the first plane hit. The room went silent for about two hours. The screen made it real and in your face. I remember seeing the second plane banking around behind the tower and telling my associate here comes another one. RTK network planning didn’t seem so important after that.
- MemberSeptember 11, 2019 at 7:33 pm
Saw it all on the early news and said to myself, “That was no accident”. My company was new at the time. Our phone stopped ringing and we did not get any additional work for weeks.
It was enough to force us out of business.
- MemberSeptember 11, 2019 at 8:21 pm
Was working a farm survey. My wife calls my cell phone and ask if I’m alright. I say yes why? She says someone is bombing New York City. My wife has never been to good and explaining things, but as bad as the terrorist attacks were, it was by no means as bad as maybe the Russians bombing us. Bout had a heart attack!
- MemberSeptember 11, 2019 at 8:29 pm
I was doing recon by myself; the first day of a survey at an old shopping mall in Fairfield County, CT. I remember the police were buzzing back and forth and I was frequent hearing sirens on the highway, but did not think it was a big deal. I had left my cell phone in the car. When I stopped for lunch and called my wife, who had frantically been trying to reach me, I learned what had happened. The big box client did not build that one; the site had been a gun factory and there was a major soil contamination issue.
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