I worked in PA-QAD from 1996 to 2010. In
that period, I was assigned to various emergency calls from PA
facilities. Everyone in PA worked proudly as one family.
I remember the September 11, 2001 WTC
terrorist attack that made a profound impact on our mind. At that time
our QAD office was relocated at Holland Tunnel in NJ. We in the QAD
group were watching the event on a small TV in a conference room and saw
smoke pouring out at the top of Tower.
I was assigned with my colleague to go to
WTC. When I arrived at Holland Tunnel NJ toll plaza I was told that only
firefighters and ambulances were allowed to go to NY. Others turned back
by NY City police. So I drove to Hoboken PATH Station but it was shut
Meanwhile NY City had taken full charge
of WTC to handle such building fires. PA Engineering set up a Command
Center at PA Journal Square facility to respond to inquiries from WTC
site. I represented QAD between 7:00 pm that day until relieved at 9:00
am next day. I remember there was an inquiry about the section of ground
level slab that was intact and a NY City contractor wanted to move a
crane on that slab. I did not agree, because that slab was not designed
for such a heavy load. Many inquiries from the WTC site were swiftly
answered. Meanwhile that evening NJ Governor with his police squad
visited the Command Center and assured us of his full support.
Next day I started driving back home. I
noticed that traffic on NJ Turnpike was more or less jammed. But the
fast lane on left was moving at 15 mph. I saw emergency vehicles from as
far away as southern states were heading to WTC. They must be driving
all night. They knew the shortage of emergency people in such an
enormous tragedy. Response across the whole nation was overwhelming.
We should never forget the people lost in
the WTC attack. God bless the USA