False Missile Warning in Hawaii Adds to Scrutiny of Emergency Alert System
A false alert sent to cellphones across Hawaii on Saturday warning of an incoming ballistic missile is calling attention to an emergency notification system that government officials at all levels say needs major improvements. The Federal Communications Commission said it was opening a “full investigation into what happened.” Sen Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii) praised FCC Chairman Ajit Pai for moving swiftly to address the mistake. FCC Commissioner Jessica Rosenworcel also expressed concern about the system’s failure. “Emergency alerts are meant to keep us and our families safe, not to create false panic,” she wrote on Twitter. “We must investigate and we must do better.” The episode appeared to be the Wireless Emergency Alerts system’s most serious misfire since it became operational in 2012 to modernize America’s decades-old approach of using television and radio to notify the public about impending weather, safety and other hazards.
False Missile Warning in Hawaii Adds to Scrutiny of Emergency Alert System FCC Chairman Pai on False Emergency Alerts in Hawaii (FCC)