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Jet Fuel Caused the Incendiary Explosions in The WTC Lobby?

Incendiary explosions in the lobby and in the basement levels accompanied the destruction of the North Tower of the World Trade Center (WTC). The evidence for these incendiary explosions is significant and includes numerous eyewitness testimonies and photographic evidence. The official, government investigation conducted by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) did not address these phenomena in any meaningful way and offered only a weak suggestion that is demonstrably false.

NIST admitted to the presence of an incendiary explosion at the concourse level and to the deaths and injuries caused by it, stating, a “fireball killed or injured several occupants in the Concourse Level lobby (NIST NCSTAR 1-7, p 73).” However, a scientific explanation was never provided. Instead, an untested hypothesis was given as fact.

“There are numerous media reports of building occupants being burned in the ground-floor lobby of WTC 1 following the aircraft impact. Numerous eyewitness accounts describe a large flash fire on the concourse floor lobby at the time of aircraft impact, that came from one or more of the elevator shafts that ran from the concourse floor of the tower past the floors where the aircraft impact took place. This observation suggests that sufficient burning liquid aviation fuel entered at least one of these elevator shafts to continue burning, while it fell roughly 1,175 feet. Even after falling this distance, sufficient unburned fuel was available to create the overpressure that opened the elevator shaft at the concourse level and forced additional unburned fuel into the lobby area, creating the extensive flash fire observed.” NIST NCSTAR 1-5A, p 80

It would have been easy to test this “jet fuel bolus” hypothesis but, as with the other features of the official account, no testing was done. That’s probably because the scientists at NIST knew that this hypothesis was very improbable to begin with.

The plane hit the center of the north face of WTC1 and all of the approximately 10,000 gallons of jet fuel was located in the wing tanks (i.e. none in the center tank according to NIST). There were 22 elevators that served the impact zone and only three of them ran all the way down to the concourse level. Given those initial conditions, a scientific approach must be used to determine what happened.

For the jet fuel bolus hypothesis to be even remotely reasonable, the following five challenges would have to be overcome.

1)  The jet fuel that was available to flow down and away via openings, after accounting for the external fireballs and impact zone fires, was estimated by FEMA to be about 3,500 gallons. And NIST stated that, “No evidence or analysis emerged that significantly altered the FEMA estimate” (NCSTAR 1-5F, p 56). The 3,500 gallons would need to flow evenly across the entire, acre-wide area of the impact floors.

2)  The impact damage would have had to fully open, and leave exposed, the 22 elevator shafts in the core area of the impact zone (or the 30+ in the WTC2 impact zone). The shafts that were most important would be for cars #6, #7, and #50, the express elevators traveling the entire distance from top to bottom. In WTC1, these were located at the opposite side of the core from the impact zone.

3)  We must assume that no more than a proportionate amount of jet fuel flowed into the express elevator shafts on the opposite side, after traveling through more than half of floor space of the tower. This would be one-22nd of the total available, or 159 gallons. There were also 12 in x 18 in telephone cable openings between floors, however, and holes in the floors made by the impacting aircraft, through which fuel would have been lost. A realistic maximum therefore might be 120 gallons in each shaft, assuming an equal amount of the spilling jet fuel made it all the way across to the express elevator side.

IMG_13044)  The jet fuel would have adhered to the surface of the elevator shaft as it traveled downward. The elevator shafts were lined with 2-inch thick gypsum planking and the low surface tension jet fuel would have wetted this thoroughly. An estimate of the surface area in an express shaft is 60,000 square feet. A quick experiment shows that gypsum board soaks up approximately 0.03 gallons of kerosene per square foot.  All the available jet fuel (120 gallons) would have been lost in this process before the jet fuel bolus reached the mid-point of its fall.

Therefore the jet fuel that was available to flow down and away from the floors of impact could not have reached the concourse level of the WTC towers.

5)  However, a lot of damage was attributed to this impossible jet fuel bolus. Eyewitnesses stated that there were intense elevator area fires in the lower half of the building. There were fires on the 40th floor, and the 22nd floor, and witnesses said that the elevator doors on the 22nd floor had been blown out from fires or explosions in the elevator shafts. Even if a highly disproportionate quantity of jet fuel from the aircraft had somehow caused these fires and the related damage, there certainly would not have have been any left to reach the lobby.

All of this ignores the questions of how unburned jet fuel could make its way around the elevator cabs in the shafts, how it could re-accumulate at the lower level, and how the supposed fuel/air mix could become optimum and then ignite. It also ignores how much jet fuel would be required to produce the explosive energy needed to destroy so much of the lobby, including the huge windows and the massive granite wall coverings, and kill people in that area.

The jet fuel bolus hypothesis also ignores the eyewitness testimonies of massive explosions within the lobby.

If NIST had done a minimal amount of physical testing to support its weak fuel bolus suggestion, the hypothesis would have been easily disproven. But that would have left people to wonder what actually did cause these incendiary fires and the ones in the basement levels. The answers to those questions would almost certainly add to the other, extensive evidence for the presence of energetic, incendiary materials at the WTC.

Basement Bombs

Are the only way to seismically couple energy to the ground when the jets hit the 1000ft levers.

There are a number of rare reports from the ground in: (I made an error with the note I added to the torrent, the videos are not corrupt in a technical sense... they like other NIST provided footage are redacted without explanation. Audio tracks removed, left/right levels apparently manipulated, sections of video absent.)

More info on NIST's process for taking raw video and hacking it up:

Somewhere around here is the audio of a conference call that was happening when AA11 hit WTC1. We know the exact duration between the explosions (aircraft and basement).

Ginny Carr audio recording - North Tower

Here is the audio recording of the two explosion/impact sounds - the first was the basement explosion, followed 9 seconds later by the impact of AA11. This is the "Ginny Carr recording". It is back on youtube - for now....

Very telling

Even if someone claims that the first explosion is the plane impact, how does the basement explosion occur only 8 or 9 seconds after? I'm not sure the jet fuel bolus could even find the Express Elevators in that time, let alone pass through shafts clogged with cabs to get to the basement levels and then decide to suddenly explode.

This video is a smoking gun.

First bang "from the "concourse"

The commentary following each noise is also telling:

1st sound: -
male voice "what the heck was that"?
female voice "....from the concourse...." (garbled)
male voice - "wow!"

2nd sound:
male voice "...... crash"

The two sounds have distinctly different dynamic envelopes - the first has distinctly faster, sharper "attack", whereas the second is more diffuse and muffled. Interestingly, in the 9/11 Encyclopedia, despite the comments by those in the business conference (one block away at 36 Liberty Plaza), it only refers to the sound of the plane impact, and ignores the clear evidence that there were two distinct "explosions", about 9 seconds apart.

The testimony of WTC janitor William Rodriguez mirrors the audio evidence on this tape - he referred to two explosions about 10 seconds apart, the first coming from the sub basement, followed by the sound of the airplane crash at the top of the North Tower. Russia Today interview

Unknown to most

the FBI has a recording of both explosions, too.

McArdle Audio.

In the news:


WTC attacks caught on audiotape

August 7, 2002 Posted: 7:56 AM EDT (1156 GMT)

NEW YORK (CNN) -- The first complete audio record known to exist of the September 11 attacks on the World Trade Center provides a chilling slice of life starting with the ordinary sounds of the start of a business day and ending with the chaos and panic of the immediate aftermath.

The tape is a recording of an FBI wire worn by an undercover informant who was meeting a suspect in probe of city tax assessors. CNN obtained a copy of the tape with the help of the New York Daily News, which broke the story.

"That was an explosion -- that was an explosion," says Stephen McArdle, a tax consultant who wore the wire for the FBI, just after the first plane hits. He is in a restaurant of the Marriott World Trade Center Hotel, part of the Trade Center complex, where he and the suspect are having breakfast.
The loud "explosion" McArdle hears is followed by some 28 seconds of roars and fire alarms. The Daily News said officials believe the sounds are of the flaming jet fuel from the plane coursing down through the tower to the lower floors.


"Suddenly there's a muffled boom from far off - followed by a second, much louder and closer explosion. It continues for 28 seconds, roiling and building in intensity."


Do you have a copy of:

The link does not work for me and it's not in

EDIT: Found a copy @

I believe I have a copy

will look for it...

found another witness:

"I was on the ground floor of the building sitting in a chair waiting for somebody to turn up as you do," said Evans.

"There was huge bang. It felt to me like somebody dropped a skip full of rubbish, a great container full of rubbish, from a great height in the yard which separates the two huge towers which are the World Trade Centre.

"It's one of those where you think, well something's happened on a building site.

"But seconds later, there were two or three similar huge explosions and the building literally shook. At which point, people came - I nearly said screaming, but they weren't screaming - it was a mild panic.

Rip of audio

I know it's on youtube, but I always try to get data in it's original format.

I havent been able to rip the stream @

If anyone else can, please send me a copy.

It would be _really_ nice if we had the continious unedited recording. Someone could FOIA that.

And then there is the Asian guy

insisting on two explosions in the Fairbanks Video, just seconds before UA175 smashed in the South Tower

It's 5,25 in here:

Interestingly, another NIST CUMULUS Version of it is edited heavily


These are public records, collected during an investigation.

When you have two different versions of the same video, one with audio removed, one with selective redaction (fuzzy faces) you can be sure someone fucked with them. Sorry to be so crude, but this is criminal evidence tampering.

Isn't it convenient that the impact of UA175 is not heard? Sound was working fine before this. WTF happened?

I can tell you that audio manipulation of NIST records is pervasive. Almost every important record has some kind of manipulation.

RE: 911 Encyclopedia

It's a bit different than a normal wiki, I only post quotes and sources. There is no discussion of the two explosions on the page you linked because the text sources listed on that page dont discuss it, and I havent had time to add additional sources to the page.

Adding the links from this thread now.

Search for "ginny" @ to find the text I copied.

Audio confirmation of Willie Rodriguez

I agree with you, bloggulator. Great of have audio confirmation of the testimony by Rodriguez and others of explosions prior to plane impact. Thanks to Nate Flach (Xenomorph911) for making this.

Bombs + Nanothermite at WTC. Whereas the thermitic materials were placed weeks if not months in advance, the basement bombs were apparently brought in at the last minute to weaken the under infrastructure in preparation for a top-down demolition. And we know that Mossad agents (Urban Moving Systems) were driving and parking van bombs that morning in NYC. Not only were they caught in the act, but several media sources reported bombs in the buildings.


Quote: "..the basement bombs were placed at the last minute to help weaken the under infrastructure..."

How do you know this for sure? We cannot know, given the available data, when this was done exactly.

To me the evidence points more towards creating panic and confusion, rather than structural weakening. The structure did not suffer any failure due to pre-collapse basement events. Walls were blown down, many people were killed and injured, but many others were still able to get in and out repeatedly.

Keep digging up new information. The old stuff is not enough.

I said 'apparently'

the bombs had a role. You're saying that none of the bombs helped to prep the building for demolition? Regardless of whether it was just to terrorize, the point is that legitimate suspects can now be fingered, Mossad (Urban Moving Systems).


You are assuming all kinds of things to jump from "bombs" to "it was urban moving systems"... without sources.

Then you specualte on when the bombs were placed, without sources or reasoning.

Please use sources. Plenty are available.

Are the complete radio transcripts online somewhere?

News Reports

I'm going by news reports of vans and trucks parked at the WTC that were believed to contain explosives.... for making a connection with Urban Moving Systems since this company's vans were out and about in NYC that very morning with explosives. I think this makes them suspicious and suspect.

MSNBC Reporter, Rick Sanchez:
"Police have found what they believe to be a suspicious device and they fear that it may lead to another explosion.­..I spoke with some police officials moments ago, Chris, and they told me they have reason to believe that one of the explosions at the WTC besides the ones made with the planes, may have been caused by a van that was parked on the building that may have had an explosive device in it."

War Correspond­ent, Jack Kelley:
"Apparentl­y what appears to happen was that at the same time two planes hit the building that there... that the FBI most likely thinks that there was a car or truck packed with explosives underneath the buildings which also exploded at the same time...""

These people (UMS) aren't Al-Qaeda, (they're a Mossad front) and yet they are waging terrorism on the morning of 9/11. They appear to be part of the plot, not separate and coincidental.

Elevator doors

The elevator doors have locks on them that prevent opening unless the car is within 18" of the landing floor. How does a fuel fireball bypass these interlocks?

Why does a fireball decide to open locked doors at only a few floors?

Very patient fireball too---

And just as telling is the fact that the "fireball" changed elevators twice to get to the lobby, as no single elevator chase made a contiguous run from the top to the bottom of the tower, instead being separate systems each divided by a sky lobby at the 1/3 and 2/3 point in the building and by fire bellows, as can be seen by reviewing photos of the towers prior to 9/11.


Can you confirm that there was no express elevator going all the way?

3 Shafts

See these maps for the layout. There were only three shafts leading to the impact zone. All were opposite the impact point.


1. There were likely cars in the shafts that could impede a fireball.
2. The impact zone fireball would eat oxygen and draw air up through the shafts like a chimney. The fireball would also propagate up as well as down.
3. Cars traveling up at the time of impact might be pushing air upwards like a piston.
3. Car survivors testified that their car dropped for a time before brakes stopped the free fall. This is odd because "safeties" work on overspeed and should be immediate. Someone had to monkey with safeties if any car fell.

Print Source


ServiceLevelFloorPlan (aka Basement 1) This was the level William Rodriguez was on.

Of course the plane impact was in the 90th floors, but I was marking up to show the arrangement of the elevator shafts relative to the impact direction.

If you want to see the upper floors, choose 89thto93rdFloorPlan or 94thand95thFloorPlan from the drop down list.

Car and shaft dimensions?

Excellent points here. As regards the (un)likelihood of a fireball making its way down the elevator shafts, the dimension of the shaft compared to that of the elevator car is worth considering - ie how much clearance was there between the outer edge of the car and the shaft walls. Could that free space be wide enough to have allowed a fireball to propagate downwards *past* a car?

The other aspect to the "jet fuel fireball" in the lobby that doesn't sit right is the evidence of the nature of destruction to the lobby - the large quantities of fine dust and marble cladding blown off the walls etc. Reliable witnesses (FDNY) were saying that the lobby was wrecked by a "huge explosion/s".

Although not an easy practical task, some experiments are needed here to determine the capability of a jet fuel and air mixture to create the type of damage witnessed in the lobby (!).

I think Ryan mentions

that there are 3 express elevators running the entire height of the building.

Fire bellows must be considered

Although the three elevator shafts would technically be said to run the entire height of the building, they were in fact protected by fire bellows which effectively divided them from the balance of the shaft. Three levels of elevator service served the buildings at 1/3 intervals, separated by sky lobbies, those prominent bands seen around the towers at the 1/3 and 2/3 mark.

Between The Lies (2009)

Arie's film has an excellent compilation of witnesses to the basement explosions.

Two events.

:INTERVIEW: CBS 8.52 am live feed Bryan Gumble talking to ‘Stuart’ a waiter working on Thompson St.
live feed image of WTC one burning on screen.

Entire interview here to give context, but KEY is at the end of the interview when he clearly states twice, two events, one specifically hearing/feeling an 'earthquake like sound', looking up, and seeing the plane go in.
I'd have to say the 'Wendell Cline' -doorman at the Marriot -interview following Stuart's certainly didn't corroborate.
The 911 emergency broadcast begins at 21:12.

BT. Whats your name?
BT. Stuart. Where are you right now?
S. I’m working at a restaurant in Soho.
BT. alright. so. tell us what you saw if you would.
S. I literally - I was waiting a table and I literally seemed to be a like a small plane...I just heard a couple of noises and it looked like it just bounced off the building and then I heard a....I just saw a huge like ball of fire on top, and then the smoke seemed to simmer down and it just, um, you know, alot of smoke just coming out and, thats pretty much the extent of what I saw.
BT. A private aircraft?
S that, umm, I’m not sure if it just seemed like a smaller plane and I don’t think it was anything commercial.
BT did you....could you tell us whether or not it was a prop or a jet?
S. I honestly don’t know. It happened too quickly.
BT. umm...Characterize the scene down there for us right now if you would.
S. Excuse me?
BT can you tell us about the scene down there right now?
S um. right now people are just on the street looking at the building....the building.... Theres just alot of smoke, um., its not too crazy down where I am.
BT How far away specifically form the WTC are you?
SI’m actually on Thompson st. North. I’m not too too far
BT its 8.54 right now. Can you tell me when this happened exactly?
S. I would have to say about 10 minutes ago.
BT About 10 minutes ago?
S yeah.
BT is this normally an area that is heavily trafficked by aircraft, or is this area that aircraft steer pretty clear of?
S Y’know, I really can’t really don’t know that information.
BT. Uhuh. Is this, there much panic around there?
S. um...just people in the street coming out looking. There was panic at first but it seemed to slow down right now.
BT. we’re looking at a picture of a great deal of smoke coming out if the can you please tell us, was there.....after you heard this crash, was there um, smoke immediately??
S. um. No There was like a big ball of fire on the , um top of the building, and then as that simmered down and and there seemed to be a ton of smoke seemed pretty much immediately -
BT. I hear fire engines in the Has that been going since you saw this crash or is that..., kind of late arrival?
S. it happened pretty much after we heard the crash, pretty quick, yeah, it was pretty quick when we heard the sirens you know., people acting on it.
BT Did you - were you looking up as the plane approached the building or did you - did it only call your attention , catch your attention after it crashed into the WTC?

S.I heard sort of a crashing sound, and I looked up quick enough to actually see something go into the building, but everything happened so fast I wasn’t quite sure what I was looking at.

BT So there is no way you can know whether or not the plane seemed to be in trouble, before it crashed into the building?
S. No no. No I , no, I couldn’t tell.
BT. Its hard for us to tell from the picture whether we are seeing just, ah, how far , ah, down from the top that the plane crashed. Have you any better eyesight to it?
S. um not really. All I know is it definitely wasn’t the top top of the building because that seems to be intact from what I saw, um., I really can’t tell.
BT Can you tell us anything about how much debris , um, came crashing to the ground? and whether or not anybody was hurt as a result?
S. I honestly don’t know. I just saw alot of what just looked like tumbling glass maybe, just alot of stuff falling down, but, not.....I can’t tell you debris-wise
BT Uhmmm. Obviously the timing of this, it comes before nine o'clock, um, perhaps , perhaps, and we say that in hopeful fashion, perhaps not everybody was at if that building was in-fact crowded with workers , we are looking at probably some casualties and injuries of considerable, ah, proportions but, um, right now theres no way of telling that. Um, Mister, ah...Stuart, just one more time and I know I am exhausting what little information you have, but we have people joining us every moment, take me through again where you were when this happened and what you saw.

S. um..I was serving tables at a restaurant and I just heard sort of like a boom almost sound.....almost like an earthquake sound , and I looked up and I saw literally some thing might’ve even bounced off a little bit of the building and next thing I know I saw a big ball of fire on the top of the building and, just lots of smoke and what looked like to me, glass going happened really quick ....its really hard to..

BT. OK. Stuart, I thank you very much. I appreciate that sir.

S. Ok. My pleasure.

More on the lobby explosions

I would like to call your attention to a good LC thread started in 2007 by NK-44 on the lobby explosions,

From my posting on page 4 of that thread,

There are jump-off links to other issues I have researched, but in that message I discuss the lobby condition and present a photo composite of the West side of North Tower lobby as assembled from several frames from the Naudet video.

For example, here are the frames I used:

Here is the composite, where I have attempted to scale, perspective undistort and snap to blueprints:

And here is an infographic of North Tower lobby, showing the elevator cars and floors served:

Did you know that there was an EXPLOSIVE EVENT on the 22nd floor of the North Tower at the moment of plane impact? I believe events on the 22nd floor OCC are very significant as the Planners would need to take out security infrastructure -- and remove the possibility that the electrically secured doors to the roof could not be released. See both of these posts. They give transcripts of communications at and after impact, be sure to read both posts.

In these posts I quote first responders describing conditions on the 21st floor (OK, pristine), the 22nd floor (explosion, fire, part of wall blown out exposing elevator shaft), and possibly the 23rd floor (OK)... which leads me directly to pose that the 22nd floor was targeted with an explosive. I would appreciate if others could see and build on this work.

And the explosions 1 hour later ?

Numerous testimonies mention a big explosion in the North Tower about 1 hour AFTER the plane crash.
All this is very well documented in Massimo Mazzucco's recent film 11/9 : The New Pearl Harbor" at 18:20 in the 3d part of the documentary (See here on YouTube.
You will also find an analysis of the volume of jet fuel compared to the volumes of the shafts, that is very closed to what Kevin Ryan explains.

BTW, Ginny Carr's recording is mentionned Massimo's film at 14:30 in the same 3r part


Dust covered people describing an explosion = ST collapse

South Tower collapsed 1 hour and 13 minutes after the first hit. Which is about one hour, at least it would be for folks caught up in the event. A wave of positive pressure rose from the (connected) basements, and it blew dust completely into the lobby and also knocked in NT windows as high as the ~21 floor. Several firefighters described ST collapse itself as an 'explosion', at least on that day.

When looking through evidence it is helpful to weed through testimony carefully if it simply describes explosions to try to find clues aside from people describing the collapses themselves.

One great source is the oral histories. These folks are meticulous, knowledgeable and direct.