9/11 families demand to reopen case
The 9/11 Parents and Families of Firefighters & WTC Victims, along with the Skyscraper Safety Campaign, is demanding that all evidence from a Ground Zero high-rise that was damaged as a result of the terrorist attacks be reviewed again in full, citing a lack of accountability in the death of two firefighters.
The former Deutsche Bank building in lower Manhattan was damaged during the 9/11 attacks but remained standing in part for years after. A 2007 blaze in the building, however, left two firefighters dead and activists are saying questions are being left unanswered about the incident.
According to a statement issued by the two groups, numerous violations in the building were never reported. A construction contractor and two supervisors were acquitted of manslaughter, among other charges, in what led to the two 2007 deaths.
The Deutsche Bank skyscraper was opened in 1974 and was damaged by the debris that blew through New York following the collapse of the Twin Towers. A 2005 investigation of the 41 story of ruins that once housed the financial institute revealed human remains on the roof. An investigation then opened up to analyze the rest of the building for missing persons. Deconstruction finally began in March of 2007, but a seven-alarm fire that summer caused by crews working on the dismantling of the structure led to the death of two city workers.
Joseph Graffagnino, 33, and Robert Beddia, 53, died from smoke inhalation and carbon monoxide poisoning on the fourteenth floor of the building on August 18, 2007. An additional 115 firefighters were also injured responding to the blaze.