The FCC says the person who sent the false alert mistook a drill for a real warning about a missile threat and there was no sign-off from a supervisor. That was compounded by the fact that the state has no standardized system for correcting such a mistake.
Chris Leonard is president of The Hawaii Association of Broadcasters. He also owns radio stations in Hawaii and was part of an NAB panel Thursday about the role broadcasters play in times of emergency. Leonard was just waking up when the alert that Hawaii was about to be hit by an incoming ballistic missile came in on his phone. Minutes later he was in his car headed to work when he heard his station air the chilling alert that “this is not a drill.”
The FCC will launch a full investigation into the false missile emergency alert sent to residents of Hawaii Saturday, Ajit Pai, FCC chairman announced. The push notification alert went out just after 8 a.m. HT Saturday, panicking residents and visitors. In addition to the push alert, the message was televised.