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US Hawaii emergency worker who sent false alert: I was '100 percent sure'

16:50  03 february  2018
16:50  03 february  2018 Source:   nbcnews.com

Employee Who Sent False Hawaii Missile Alert Is Refusing to Cooperate With FCC Investigation

  Employee Who Sent False Hawaii Missile Alert Is Refusing to Cooperate With FCC Investigation The Hawaii Emergency Management Agency employee who sent a false alert about an incoming ballistic missile earlier this month has refused to cooperate with a Federal Communications Commission investigation, an FCC official said Thursday. Lisa Fowlkes, chief of the FCC’s public safety and homeland security bureau, said she was “disappointed” during a hearing with the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation. “We are quite pleased with the level of cooperation we have received from the leadership of the Hawaii Emergency Management Agency thus far. We are disappointed, however, that one key employee, the person who transmitted the false alert, is refusing to cooperate with our investigation,” Fowlkes said on Thursday. “We hope that person will reconsider.

who sent a false alert last month warning of an imminent missile attack says he was convinced the threat was real and “ 100 percent sure ” he was “ I did what I was trained to do,” said the worker , who spoke to NBC News on Friday on the condition of anonymity because of threats against his life.

On Saturday morning, January 13, 2018, a ballistic missile alert was issued via the Emergency Alert System and Commercial Mobile Alert System over television, radio

HONOLULU — The Hawaii emergency management worker who sent a false alert last month warning of an imminent missile attack says he was convinced the threat was real and "100 percent sure" he was doing the right thing.

Hawaii to release report on false missile alarm

  Hawaii to release report on false missile alarm Hawaii officials have concluded their internal investigation into the false alert that told residents that a ballistic missile was speeding toward the state earlier this month. Hawaii Gov. David Ige along with other officials will release the results from the internal investigation at a Tuesday press conference.

Worker fired over false alarm that spread panic speaks out, saying: ‘It’s been hell for me the last couple weeks’.

The emergency management worker in Hawaii responsible for sending out a mistaken alert last month warning of an incoming missile said Friday that he was convinced the threat was real and was “ 100 percent sure ” at the time that he was doing the right thing. “ I heard, ‘This is not a drill.’

"I did what I was trained to do," said the worker, who spoke to NBC News on Friday on the condition of anonymity because of threats against his life.

The mistake sparked panic on Jan. 13, sending Hawaiians scrambling to seek shelter amid heightened tensions between the U.S. and North Korea over the regime's nuclear ambitions.

A preliminary federal investigation released last month said the recorded drill message began and ended with the phrase "exercise, exercise, excise." It also included language scripted for use during an actual missile alert: "This is not a drill."

Image: An electronic sign in OahuAn electronic sign reads © Provided by NBCU News Group, a division of NBCUniversal Media LLC Image: An electronic sign in OahuAn electronic sign reads "There is no threat" in Oahu, Hawaii, after a false emergency alert that said a ballistic missile was headed for Hawaii Jan. 13, 2018.

But the emergency worker, who has been fired, claims he "didn't hear 'exercise' at all in that whole transmission." As soon as he realized his error, he "just wanted to crawl under a rock."

Top official resigns after false missile alert in Hawaii

  Top official resigns after false missile alert in Hawaii HONOLULU — Hawaii's emergency management leader has resigned and a state employee who sent an alert falsely warning of an incoming ballistic missile has been fired, officials said Tuesday, weeks after the mistake caused widespread panic.Hawaii Emergency Management Agency Administrator Vern Miyagi stepped down Tuesday, state Adjutant General Maj. Gen. Joe Logan said. A second agency worker quit before disciplinary action was taken and another was being suspended without pay, Logan said in announcing results of an internal investigation.

HONOLULU -- A former Hawaii state worker who sent a false missile alert last month said Friday that he's devastated for causing panic but was " 100 percent sure " The Hawaii Emergency Management Agency fired him. He described his life as "utter hell" since sending the alert , according to KGMB.

The former Hawaii Emergency Management Agency employee who sent out a false alert for an incoming ballistic missile in January said that he is "devastated" and has been struggling to sleep at night after he mistakenly alerted the state of an attack that he was " 100 percent sure " was .

"It was incredibly difficult for me, very emotional," he said, adding that his team was immediately flooded with phone calls from frantic citizens.

Officials who led an internal investigation said last month that five other employees had heard the part of the drill message indicating it was an exercise.

The worker who sent the erroneous alert had a "history of confusing drill and real world events," retired Brig. Gen. Bruce Oliveira, who led the internal probe, said at a news conference earlier this week. The worker had mistakenly believed drills for tsunami and fire warnings were real emergencies, the state found.

Related: Hawaii false alarm: Ensuing chaos is teachable moment, experts say

But the worker disputed those findings in his interview with NBC News, insisting they were not accurate.

The preliminary report from the Federal Communications Commission found the drill was "run without sufficient supervision" and that "there were no procedures in place to prevent a single person from mistakenly sending a missile alert from the State of Hawaii."

"There was no requirement in place for a warning officer to double check with a colleague or get sign off from a supervisor before sending such an alert," the report said.

The worker said Friday that he believes the state emergency management agency deserves the blame for the mistake — and shouldn't be shouldering the responsibility in the first place.

"We weren't prepared to send out missile notifications," he said. "I think the military should do that."

But he said he still feels remorseful.

"I regret this ever happened," he said. "I feel terrible about it. I did what I thought was right at the time."

Jacob Soboroff and Aarne Heikkila reported from Honolulu, Daniel Arkin reported from New York

Hawaii man wants people to know he didn't send missile alert .
HONOLULU — When an erroneous alert was sent out last month telling people in Hawaii that there was an incoming ballistic missile, Jeffrey Wong was an island away from the state's emergency management agency office where he works as an operations officer.Wong helped gather hundreds of panicked guests at his hotel on the island of Kauai to seek shelter in a restaurant until he confirmed the alert was a mistake.Then an Associated Press photograph circulated picturing Wong months earlier at the agency'sWong helped gather hundreds of panicked guests at his hotel on the island of Kauai to seek shelter in a restaurant until he confirmed the alert was a mistake.

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