NU Online News Service, Sept. 14, 2:05 p.m. – The New York City operations of the New York Insurance Department, which were blocks from the World Trade Center, will operate out of Albany, N.Y., headquarters until further notice, according to department spokeswoman Joanna Rose.
As far as the department is aware, there are no casualties or injuries at the department, Rose said today.
The New York City office is without electricity. It was been off-limits to employees, because city authorities have been shutting off the southern section of Manhattan, where the trade center is located, to give rescue and repair teams room to work.
The department has set up a hotline, at 800-339-1759, to answer consumer questions. Rose says that currently volume has been light but that it could increase in the coming weeks. A call to the hotline indicated that all circuits were busy, suggesting a possible increase in volume. Rose says the department would consider adding additional numbers if needed.
When Manhattan World Trade Center Building 1, also known as the North Tower, was hit by a hijacked plane from Boston, some of the department was off-site at a hearing on auto insurance with New York State Sen. James L. Seward, R-Oswego County, chair of the Senate Insurance Committee, and New York State Assemblyman Alexander ‘Pete’ Grannis, D-New York City, the Assembly Insurance Committee chair. The off-site hearing was on Water Street, a few blocks from the WTC site.
Everyone, including Sen. Seward, left the Water Street building and returned to the department offices. Staff members were evacuated from department headquarters. Staff members walked east, away from the World Trade Center, then north along the East River.