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V 1.41
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911Research.WTC7.net site last updated:3/21/13
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Background Attack Aftermath Evidence Misinformation Analysis Memorial

Civil Aviation Post-9/11/01

Reverberations of the Attack in Civil Aviation and Beyond

A shutdown in civil aviation went into effect on the morning of September 11, 2001. 1  

9:17 AM FAA shuts down all five airports in the New York City area.
9:26 AM FAA issues a national "ground stop," preventing all civilian flights from taking off.
9:45 AM FAA grounds all civilian planes in the US.
10:30 AM FAA reports that all inbound transatlantic flights were being diverted to Canada.
10:39 AM FAA closes all operations at all US airports.
12:04 AM The Los Angeles International airport is evacuated.
12:06 AM The San Francisco airport is evacuated.

At 9:45, when the nationwide grounding of flights was ordered by the FAA, there were over 4000 flights in the air. 2   Most of these planes had to land at airports far from their original destinations. This, combined with the extended shutdown of civil aviation, stranded hundreds of thousands of travelers far from their homes.

Aviation in the United States took weeks to regain a semblance of normalcy, with only commercial and some agricultural flights being allowed when the nationwide grounding was lifted on 9/13/01. 3  

9/13/01 At 11 AM the FAA allows airports to open and commercial flights to resume on a case-by-case basis.
9/14/01 FAA announces it is not interested in prosecuting pilots who took off that morning as a result of confusion over whether general aviation flights were still grounded.
9/14/01 Secretary Mineta announces: "Effective today, general aviation -- that important segment of aviation consisting of privately owned and operated aircraft -- will be allowed to resume flights operating under Instrument Flight Rules..."
9/16/01 FAA announces: "Please note that flights under visual flight rules (VFR) have not been authorized. On September 16, the FAA ordered a temporary suspension of all agricultural aviation flights as part of an overall assessment of the gradual resumption of flights that operate under visual flight rules. Agricultural aviation flights had been cleared to resume service on September 13."
9/19/01 FAA announces: "VFR flight may resume with restrictions, including, no flight in, over, or under any Class B airspace, and no VFR flight training."
9/21/01 FAA allows resumption of most flight training activities.

Despite the fact that private flights were disallowed before September 14th, a private Jet flew Saudi nationals within the US on the 13th.


References

1. September 11: Chronology of terror, CNN.com, 8/12/02 [cached]
2. FAA controllers detail Sept. 11 events, AP, 8/12/02 [cached]
3. VAA Chapter 15 News Archive, vaa15.org, [cached]

page last modified: 2007-01-16