• Des Latham

Japan also issues false missile alert only days after Hawaii's


Source: Andy Sharp, Twitter.

Japan sent out an emergency missile alert, sending people scrambling for cover, only days after Hawaii made the same mistake.

On Tuesday, texts citing J-Alert, the system the government uses to warn its citizens about missiles and natural disasters, issued a warning about a missile. Five minutes later, the broadcaster NHK, issued an apology stating it was a false alarm. The broadcaster later corrected that the J-Alert system was not to blame for the mistake, but instead, operators whom had made a mistake.

People in Japan are used to getting J-Alerts and reacting to them. In 2017 alone, there had been 18 North Korean missile launches. Due to the proximity of Japan to North Korea missiles fly very close to Japan and J-Alerts have to be issued in case of threat to Japanese citizens. Japan's J-Alert instructed people to evacuate into buildings and basements. For a North Korean missile to reach Japan it would take 10 minutes, while in Hawaii it would take 20 minutes.

On Saturday in Hawaii, it took 38 minutes before officials rectified their mistake. In Hawaii, across the island, people were seen running for shelter and hotel basements. Children were put in manholes, some constructed their own shelters using mattresses, bath tubs and other objects they could find. While others decided to accept their destiny and enjoy the beauty around them.

People took to social media to express their shock.

Some people started speculating about the proximity of the similar events.

President Donald Trump was golfing at the time of the false alert in Hawaii, while he was informed about the situation, he continued to play. Later on during the day Trump said Hawaii takes full responsibility for the incident and that the US will help Hawaii improve the system to make sure it does not happen again.


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