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Thursday, 13 September, 2001, 12:54 GMT 13:54 UK
Passengers 'fought to avert disaster'
The crash site of United Airlines Flight 93 in Pennsylvania
UA Flight 93 could have been targeted at Camp David
Details are emerging of the events surrounding the crash of one of the hijacked airliners in Pennsylvania on Tuesday.

Relatives of some of those killed in the crash say a number of the passengers fought back against the hijackers after learning of the attacks on the World Trade Center.

Somebody made a heroic effort to keep the plane from hitting a populated area

Congressman John Murtha
Officials have not revealed whether there was a struggle onboard, but neither have they explained why the airliner with its 45 passengers crashed into a field rather than in a built-up area.

It is now becoming clear that some of the passengers on United Flight 93 found out that other planes had been used to attack the World Trade Center.

Fighting back

They used cell phones to contact relatives on the ground who told them about the attacks.

Hearing about these attacks they decided to try to fight back against the hijackers.

Tom Crowley, the brother-in-law of one of the plane victims, Jeremy Glick, told the Washington Post: "Jeremy and the people around them found out about the flights into the World Trade Center and decided that if their fate was to die, they should fight."

Mr Glick is said to have explained to his wife that the plane had been taken over by three men of Middle Eastern appearance wearing red headbands.

He wished his wife a good life and asked her to look after their three-month-old baby daughter.

Cockpit transcript

Moments earlier, according to a partial transcript of cockpit chatter obtained by CNN, air traffic controllers heard someone shout "Get out of here" through an open microphone.

The microphone went off and came back on. Scuffling could be heard. Somebody again yelled: "Get out of here."

The microphone went off again, then on, and a voice in broken English - an Arabic accent, according to a source who heard the tape - said: "There is a bomb on board. This is the captain speaking. Remain in your seat. There is a bomb on board. Stay quiet. We are meeting with their demands. We are returning to the airport."

The microphone went off.

Small damage

The hijacked United Airlines flight was the only plane to crash without causing damage to structures on the ground.

"Somebody made a heroic effort to keep the plane from hitting a populated area," said Congressman John Murtha.

America officials have said secret services feared the target of the United flight was Camp David, the presidential retreat in Maryland about 85 miles (135km) from the crash site.

Others speculated that the White House or Pentagon could have been targets.

The BBC's Martin Turner
"Those on board were aware that stopping the hijackers would end their lives"
John Clifford
had relatives on one of the hijacked planes and in the World Trade Center
Brad and Debra Burlingame paid tribute
to their dead brother Captain Charles Burlingame, the pilot of one of the hijacked flights
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