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The Seattle Times Saturday,

The Seattle Times

Saturday, February 27, 1993

Title: Twin Towers Engineered To Withstand Jet Collision

"We looked at every possible thing we could think of that could happen to the buildings, even to the extent of an airplane hitting the side," said John Skilling, head structural engineer. "However, back in those days people didn't think about terrorists very much."

Skilling, based in Seattle, is among the world's top structural engineers. He is responsible for much of Seattle's downtown skyline and for several of the world's tallest structures, including the Trade Center.

Concerned because of a case where an airplane hit the Empire State Building, Skilling's people did an analysis that showed the towers would withstand the impact of a Boeing 707.

"Our analysis indicated the biggest problem would be the fact that all the fuel (from the airplane) would dump into the building. There would be a horrendous fire. A lot of people would be killed," he said. "The building structure would still be there."

Modern Marvels: World Trade Center Part 5 (HQ)
Recorded January 25th 2001

"The building was designed to have a fully loaded 707 crash into it, that was the largest plane at the time, I believe that the building probably could sustain multiple impacts of jet liners because, this structure is like the mosquito netting on your screen door. This intense grid, and the jet plane is just a pencil, puncturing that screen netting, it really does nothing to the screen netting."

Frank A. Demartini (Missing since 09/11/2001)
Manager, WTC Construction & Project Management

In addition, investigators from NIST who examined the destruction of the WTC skyscrapers told The New York Times in 2007 that newly disclosed documents from the 1960s show that the new York Port Authority, the original owners of Twin Towers, also considered aircraft moving at 600 mph,slightly faster and therefore more destructive than the ones that did hit the towers.