Hawaiian emergency worker who sent wrong message reassigned

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On Saturday, January 13, 2018, an emergency missile alert accidentally went out to everyone in Hawaii, causing mass panic as people thought they were about to die.

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HONOLULU – The Hawaiian employee who sent the wrong message, alerting Hawaiians that a “ballistic missile threat” was inbound to the state, has been reassigned, the Associated Press reports.

The employee was reassigned to a job without access to the warning system amid an internal investigation, Richard Rapoza, a spokesperson for the Hawaii Office of Emergency Management, told the Associated Press said.

No other personnel changes were made.

The emergency alert notification sent out on Saturday was a false alarm caused by an employee pressing the “wrong button” during a shift change, according to Hawaii Gov. David Ige.

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

While the message caused concern on social media, the Hawaii Office of Emergency Management quickly responded on Twitter, saying, “NO missile threat to Hawaii.”

“It was a mistake made during a standard procedure at the change over of a shift and an employee pushed the wrong button,” Gov. David Ige told CNN.

President Donald Trump says the federal government will “get involved” with Hawaii following the false alarm.

Trump says what happened Saturday “was a state thing.” He did not describe the level of federal involvement he envisions, but the Federal Communications Commission has opened an investigation.

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