Hawaii 'ballistic missile threat' alert to phones was false alarm, officials say

"I'm sorry for that pain and confusion that anyone might have experienced. I, too, am very angry and disappointed that this happened".

Screenshots of iPhone emergency alerts filled social media, as people on the island tried to figure out what was happening.

"What happened today is totally inexcusable", tweeted Sen.

The Hawaii Emergency Management Agency says it's not clear what caused the alert to go out.

"This is a false alarm but this is also how [accidental] wars start", Jon Wolfsthal, a scholar at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace and a nuclear nonproliferation expert, posted on Twitter.

Hawaii EMA sent a correction notification 38 minutes after sending out its initial message.

The second alert went out about half an hour later.

Miyagi added, "This is regrettable. This can not happen again".

The alert sent people scrambling for shelters, overloaded cell phones services and crashed the Hawaii Emergency Management's website, Hawaii News Now reported.

This is breaking news, more information will be provided as forthcoming.

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Adnan Mesiwala, a visitor, said he and his family was on the 36th floor of a hotel when they got the alert. "Haha glad to know we'll all be safe", Thomas, the defending champion and world number four, tweeted at the same time as Spaun. The White House deputy press secretary, Lindsay Walters, released a statement afterward saying Trump had been made aware of the situation.

An investigation is now underway looking into why the missile warning was mistakenly shown on the Emergency Broadcast System.

"Hawaii - this is a false alarm", Democrat Tulsi Gabbard said on Twitter.

"The whole state was terrified", he said.

LoPresti said he has two children, ages 8 and 4. The alert stated there was a threat "inbound to Hawaii" and urged residents to seek shelter.

NO missile threat to Hawaii. In November, Hawaii began testing warning sirens to prepare for a possible nuclear attack. It was back up by about 9:30 a.m.

US Pacific Command spokesman Commander David Benham later told reporters in a statement, "USPACOM has detected no ballistic missile threat to Hawaii". "I have confirmed with officials there is no incoming missile".

The alert was sent out due to human error, Hawaii Gov. David Ige told CNN.

"It was a false alarm based on a human error".

"This enormous mistake is unacceptable. It was user error", Rapoza said.

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