Re: WTC and Low Tech

From: Tim Trainor (
Date: Mon Sep 24 2001 - 05:19:03 MDT

> Better idea than rappelling gear: an emergency belt that is
> connected to a steel cable on a reel next to all windows.
> The reel has a centrifugal clutch and damping so that it
> lowers the victim quickly up top and slows her descent
> near the ground. Remember the reel is set according to how
> far it is off the ground. After the victim unbuckles and
> flees, the device could reel in the cable for the next person.
> Recall that a steel cable strong enough to support a human
> is very small, 2 mm diameter is ample. In the case of the
> WTC, there would be no need to design it for a 400+ lb person,
> for a lardbutt would be unable to egress from those
> narrow windows in any case.

This idea sounds very cool but would not work because the little basket
designed to lower one person at a time to the ground would be beseiged by 10
panicking New Yorkers all clambering on top of each others heads to get out.
It then fails and lowers them all to the ground a little too quickly and
subsequently becomes inoperative.

Extremely tall buildings cannot have openable windows because of the danger
of people throwing themselves and other things out.

But it is a cool idea.

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