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VOA | Saturday January 13, 20187
Hawaiians Startled by False Missile Alert
Hawaiians received alerts of a 'ballistic missile threat' on Saturday that were swiftly deemed false, triggering criticism of the state's emergency alert system. Shortly after 8 a.m. local time in the U.S. Pacific Island state, Hawaii residents posted on social media screen shots of the alert they had received on their mobile phones, reading, 'BALLISTIC MISSILE THREAT INBOUND TO HAWAII. SEEK IMMEDIATE SHELTER. THIS IS NOT A DRILL.' Twenty minutes later, the Hawaii Emergency Management Agency tweeted that there was no missile threat to the state. It also sent out an email to correct the error. But the correction was not sent out to mobile phones until 38 minutes after the mistaken alert, which has upset some officials and private citizens alike. The White House sent out a statement by deputy press secretary Lindsay Walters: 'The president has been briefed on the state of Hawaii's emergency management exercise. This was purely a state exercise.' The U.S. Navy's Pacific Command also confirmed that the alerts had been sent in error. - Sen. Brian Schatz, D-Hawaii, speaks during a news conference on Capitol Hill in Washington, May 24, 2017. Schatz said that 'there needs to be tough and quick accountability' for the false missile threat tweet sent Jan. 13, 2018. 'USPACOM has detected no missile threat to...Read more