What REALLY Caused That Missile Alert Panic in Hawaii?
After an FCC (Federal Communications Commission) investigation of the January 13th missile alert panic that sent Hawaii into chaos for several hours, officials have learned the initial explanations are waaayy off the mark.
The FCC's Public Safety and Homeland Security Bureau has learned the reason the incoming missile alert was sent was because of a variety of miscommunications, human error and perhaps a lack of training.
According to Inside Radio, January 13th, the officer in command of the Emergency Alert System (EAS) in Hawaii decide to conduct what's called a "no-notice exercise," meaning an unplanned, unscheduled test. Or, in layman's terms "Oh By The Way," we're doing this NOW. When you hear those EAS alerts on our stations or sometimes get them on your phone, they are planned tests that EVERYBODY in the EAS system in our state knows about. Coordinated.
This was not. The 'off the cuff' test was relayed to the people responsible for sending the test alert, but they misunderstood the message and thought it was NOT A DRILL, but a real attack. It only took a few clicks from a drop-down computer menu to send the state into a tizzy. Then, due to confusion about how to recall the message, and because phone lines were exploding all over the state, it took 38 minutes before officials could send a message saying it was just a drill. No missile was headed towards Hawaii.
The FCC says better training, communication and scheduling the tests would have prevented this. Sometimes officials like to 'test' the readiness of their workers by conducting 'unscheduled' 'no-notice exercises,' but FCC officials say workers better be well trained and ready so mistakes likes this don't happen again.