The family of a Massachusetts man killed in the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks says newly released court documents show security problems at Boston’s airport the day of attacks are to blame for the man’s death.
The documents were filed in federal court in Manhattan as part of a lawsuit brought by the family of Mark Bavis against United Airlines and a private security company. The suit alleges the company’s screeners at Logan International Airport weren’t made aware of the terrorist threat from al-Qaida, didn’t know what the chemical Mace was and had trouble communicating in English.
Bavis died when his flight from Boston was flown into the World Trade Center’s south tower.
“What’s really shocking for me is it’s taken more than nine years for this to come out,” Bavis’s twin brother, Mike Bavis, told the Boston Herald in a report published Tuesday.
The defendants have argued they shouldn’t be held liable for a terrorist attack that came without warning.
Among the documents filed by the plaintiffs late last week were transcripts of depositions with screeners who claimed they were never briefed on potential threats.
“Was there any discussion during your classroom training about threat information? About potential terrorist threats or things of that nature. … Osama bin Laden or al Qaida?” one screener was asked.
“I don’t remember talking about that,” the screener responded.
The same person was asked if he had any training about what kinds of knives were allowed in secure areas of the airport. The answer: “At that point, we don’t have no rules.”
When asked if each shift started with a security briefing, another screener responded, “No, we never had that.”
The plaintiffs also filed an FBI report on an interview with the father of another Sept. 11 victim describing frantic phone calls from his son, a passenger on the same hijacked Boston flight carrying Mark Bavis.
“It’s getting bad, dad,” the father of Lee Hanson recalled his son saying. “A stewardess was stabbed. They seem to have knives and Mace. … I don’t think the pilot is flying the plane. I think we’re going down. … Don’t worry, dad. If it happens, it will be very fast.”
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