Worker Who Hit False Missile Alert Is Reassigned


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Hawaii officials say an employee has been reassigned after mistakenly hitting the live alert button of the state’s missile warning system, creating a wave of panic.

Hawaii Emergency Management Agency spokesman Richard Rapoza said in an email Monday that the worker has been temporarily moved to a job without access to the system amid an internal investigation.

He says no other personnel changes have been made.

The agency has said that it changed protocols to require that two people send an alert and made it easier to cancel a false alarm — a process that took nearly 40 minutes Saturday.

The blunder caused more than a million people in Hawaii to fear that they were about to be struck by a nuclear missile.



  1. I have commented a number of time of the dangers of over digitization of society. That placing so much power into the hands of low paid and often, low voltage bureaucrats is dangerous. This is a perfect example of what can happen. Now let us project into a future were everything is digital but now instead of the warning button, he presses the “delete all data” button on someone’s account. Presto-Magico, that person now no longer exists. Maybe there is a back up, maybe not. Maybe the process of restoring his account is easy and accessible without going through a bureaucratic nightmare, maybe not. Do we really want to create such a fragile world?

  2. Do you really think this has anything to do with the pay rate of this employee? Anyone can make a mistake. If this was truly by accident I don’t think this person should lose his job.

  3. It is inconceivable how someone can mess up, pressing two buttons to enable the alert. Do you realize this guy caused the fear of death in over a million people.
    Once again it’s a government circus where employees aren’t held to the test. Pathetic !