Statement By Ernesto Butcher, Chief Operating Officer, Port Authority Of New York And New Jersey:
Port Authority police are continuing intensive search and rescue efforts in and around the site of the World Trade Center tragedy, in close coordination with New York City Police Department, the Fire Department of New York and other federal, state and local authorities. More than 150 Port Authority Police officers have been working around the clock at the scene. Our thoughts and our prayers are with the victims, their families and the thousands of rescue workers, medical personnel and law enforcement officers who have responded to this tragedy with impressive dedication and heroism.
As of 10 a.m., more than 200 Port Authority staff remain unaccounted for, including approximately 35 Port Authority police officers and commanders who were actively engaged in evacuation and rescue efforts. The agency is committing its full resources to locate and rescue missing Port Authority employees, and all other victims of this terrible act of treachery.
The Port Authority has set up a phone bank to help family members locate their loved ones and receive other assistance. FOR FAMILY MEMBERS ONLY, phone numbers to call about missing Port Authority employees are 973: 565-5505, 5506 or 5507. THESE NUMBERS ARE NOT FOR MEMBERS OF THE GENERAL PUBLIC, OR FOR TRANSPORTATION INFORMATION. THEY ARE TO BE USED ONLY FOR INFORMATION ABOUT MISSING PORT AUTHORITY EMPLOYEES.
Members of the public who want to make donations or provide other assistance are encouraged to contact their local Red Cross chapters.
The Port Authority airports, bridges and tunnels, bus terminals and the PATH rail transit system are fully staffed and secure. We have started to restore service at some facilities and are prepared to fully restore service when we receive approval from appropriate government officials and law enforcement agencies. We are continuing communication with the FBI, the FAA, Offices of Emergency Management of the States of New York and New Jersey and the City of New York and all other appropriate federal, state and local agencies.
PATH is operating both east and westbound service from 33rd Street in Manhattan to Newark, Jersey City and Hoboken.
The Staten Island bridges are now open in both directions. The George Washington Bridge upper level is now open in both directions. No tolls will be collected today.
The Lincoln and Holland tunnels remain closed in both directions until further notice.
All Port Authority Marine Terminals will be closed today. All other facilities, including Port Authority airports and the Port Authority Bus Terminal remain closed. Service will resume as soon as possible.