Hawaiians and tourists alike were shaken shortly after 8:00 a.m. HST when a push notification alerted those in the state of islands to a false missile threat, causing an immediate panic.
“BALLISTIC MISSILE THREAT INBOUND TO HAWAII. SEEK IMMEDIATE SHELTER. THIS IS NOT A DRILL,” read the message, which also blared across Hawaiian televisions stations.
Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, D-HI, confirmed the false alarm on Twitter 12 minutes after the errant message was sent.
Rep. Gabbard told CNN that the alert was “inadvertent,” according to a tweet by Jake Tapper.
“We’re in a process of sending another message to cancel the initial message. It was part of a drill that was going on,” a spokesperson from Hawaii’s Emergency Management Agency told BuzzFeed News.
Hawaiians heard a nuclear attack warning siren test last December for the first time since the Cold War, when the Hawaii Emergency Management Agency tested a statewide alert tone signaling nuclear threat.