The Pioneer

The Pioneer

Hawaii Missile Alert

Anna Favetta, Editor-in-Chief

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Not long after 8am on Saturday, Jan. 13 a missile alert was issued to the state of Hawaii.

The alert read, “BALLISTIC MISSILE THREAT INBOUND TO HAWAII. SEEK IMMEDIATE SHELTER. THIS IS NOT A DRILL.” 

Residents were advised to seek shelter immediately and to stay away from windows. The warning put the people in Hawaii into a panic. Around 38 minutes later, another alert was issued stating the missile warning was a mistake.

While the FCC does have rules established surrounding emergency alerts, sending those messages is usually emergency management officials’ responsibility. On Saturday however, there was no specific system in place for correcting an error of that significance.

There is now a cancellation button that can be used within seconds of making the error, the Hawaii Emergency Management Agency (HEMA) has also suspended all internal drills until the investigation on the situation has concluded. The HEMA has also established a two-person activation/verification rule for all tests and real missile launch notifications.

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