Network Disaster Recovery

World Trade Center

September/October 2001

NDR recovery site in Jersey City, NJ in September 2001

AT&T's Network Disaster Recovery (NDR) Team was activated immediately following the destruction of the World Trade Center towers on the morning of September 11, 2001. The collapse of the buildings, and the collateral damage that occurred, impacted AT&T's Local Network Services (LNS) capabilities. NDR was deployed to support the recovery of those services and to provide emergency communications for the relief effort in lower Manhattan.

The first recovery trailers and team members arrived at a staging location in New Jersey by 6:00 AM EDT on Wednesday, September 12. A safe recovery location in northern New Jersey was secured early that afternoon. The team and its equipment were escorted to the site and the initial trailer setup was completed shortly after midnight. Early on Thursday, September 13, work began to interconnect the technology trailers and to splice the complex into the fiber ring that served the AT&T equipment near the World Trade Center. Over the next two days, the recovery trailers were prepared to receive service from the AT&T metro network as needed.

 An NDR ECV deployed in Manhattan in September 2001

While network-level recovery work was underway in New Jersey, NDR deployed an Emergency Communications Vehicle (ECV) to NYPD's backup command center in lower Manhattan. Because of extensive damage to Verizon's infrastructure, the NYPD headquarters building had no regular telephone service. The ECV provided forty-eight phone lines for administrative use and for use by the families of missing NYPD members. The ECV was in service at NYPD headquarters from Wednesday, September 12, until Friday, September 21.

On September 21, the ECV was moved so it could provide free telephone service for relief workers at the WTC disaster site. Phone lines from the ECV were brought into the Spirit of New York, a dinner cruise ship moored in North Cove Yacht Harbor, adjacent to the World Financial Center. The ship was converted for use as a food and rest station for the rescue workers. The ECV remained in service there until Thursday, October 4.