NEW YORK – Construction workers near the World Trade Center discovered 74 more bone fragments on a damaged skyscraper being prepared for demolition, officials said.
Investigators reviewing emergency calls from the morning of the terrorist attacks also identified eight more recordings of emergency dispatches and 911 calls from the towers that had previously been overlooked.
Most of the bone fragments discovered over the weekend were found mixed with gravel that had been raked to the sides of the roof of the Deutsche Bank building, which suffered extensive damage when the twin towers collapsed on Sept. 11, 2001.
"This is the largest find from the Deutsche Bank, and I would not be surprised if additional quantities of remains are found there," Ellen Borakove, a spokeswoman for the city medical examiner's office, told The New York Times in Thursday's editions. "They are still doing the cleanup."
The building is contaminated with asbestos, lead and trade center dust and being cleaned before workers begin deconstructing it floor by floor in June.
Earlier this year, workers in the building found four additional human body parts, and they found 10 additional bone fragments on the roof last fall. In the most recent discovery, workers retrieved 82 samples, 74 of which proved to be human remains that will undergo DNA testing, Borakove said.
The medical examiner's office has more than 9,000 unidentified remains from the 2,749 victims of the trade center attack. The remains are being are being stored in the hope that more sophisticated DNA technology will allow for identifications in the future.
The newly discovered 911 recordings were identified on two previously overlooked tapes as investigators searched for the voice of a fire department official who died in the trade center.
The fire department said the recordings would be released after they are processed by the city law department. Roughly 130 calls were released Friday after the voices of the callers had been edited out. The voices of the fire and police operators who heard the calls for help were released after the Times and victims' relatives sued.