September 22, 2001 11:51 AM

•Workers battled underground fires in the ruins of the World Trade Center on Friday, 10 days after the attack, as heavy equipment was moved into the 16-acre site to begin clearing away wreckage. That maneuver was something of a silent admission that the hope to find remaining survivors is all but gone.

•On Saturday, civilian passersby, allowed to view the wreckage from the east side of Broadway in Lower Manhattan, gasped in horror at the wreckage, whose scope and size are diminished on TV screens. Police kept the crowds moving, though even some of them stopped and looked again in disbelief.

•While experts say survival is still possible, Mayor Rudolph Giuliani said on Friday, “The experts have not dealt with a situation like this before, which is two hundred-story buildings that have been driven deep into the ground that are still partially on fire underground.”

•The numbers: 252 people have been confirmed dead, and of those, only 183 have been identified, said the mayor. The list of the missing remained at 6,333 people, while 6,408 people were reported injured. Giuliani said a shift to recovery from rescue efforts would not be likely to come in an official announcement. “I don’t think we’ll have to do it that way. I think what will happen is over a period of time, the emphasis will change,” he said.

•Some portions of New York’s Battery Park City, in what used to be the shadow of the World Trade Center, are reopening on Saturday, allowing residents to return to their apartments for the first time since the attacks. No cars are permitted in the area, which is hindering some of the moving. Some residents, too, are keeping their window blinds shut, rather than look at the devastation next to them. There are also stories, under full investigation by law authorities, that some apartments were robbed since Sept. 11. The New York Times also reported that some of the stores in the shopping mall that was under the World Trade Center were looted.

•Meanwhile, the economy has continued its slide. On Friday, Wall Street closed out a horrendous week in which the Dow Jones industrial average lost 1,369.70 points, its biggest one-week point drop in history.

•In his weekly radio address on Saturday morning, President Bush promised that the nation will make a steady and slow recovery. “Our country’s wealth is not contained in glass and steel,” he said. “It is found in the skill and hard work and entrepreneurship of our people, and those are as strong today as they were two weeks ago.”

•Congress on Friday approved a $15 billion relief package for the airline industry, which has been in crisis since the attacks. The 356-54 House vote in favor of the rescue plan followed 96-1 approval by the Senate. It now goes to President Bush, who has already voiced his support.

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