Maui News

Travelers Should Not Be Alarmed by Attack Warning Signal

November 29, 2017, 3:15 PM HST
* Updated November 29, 3:17 PM
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Background image courtesy County of Maui.

Beginning Dec. 1, 2017, monthly tests of the statewide warning siren system will include a newly-activated Attack Warning Tone, intended to warn Hawaiʻi residents of an impending nuclear missile attack.

During this test, all warning sirens will sound a one-minute Attention Alert Signal (Steady Tone) followed by a one-minute Attack Warning Signal (Wailing Tone). December will be the first month for the reinstatement of the Attack Warning Signal testing since the Cold War.

George D. Szigeti, president and CEO of the Hawaiʻi Tourism Authority, issued the following statement to reassure visitors to Hawaiʻi about the monthly test:

“For decades, the State of Hawaiʻi has sounded a one-minute test of the Outdoor Warning Siren followed by a Live Audio Broadcast of the Emergency Alert System on the first workday of each month on all islands to help residents, businesses and visitors prepare for a natural disaster. The system is tested monthly to ensure it is operational in communities statewide and to remind everyone about being prepared in advance and knowing where to seek information should a natural disaster occur.

“On December 1, Hawaiʻi will supplement the emergency warning system by introducing a one-minute test of an Attack Warning Signal to follow the Outdoor Warning Siren. The test of the Attack Warning Signal is also being conducted monthly on the first workday and is in response to North Korea’s test launches and threats to use an intercontinental ballistic missile against the United States.


“It is imperative to remember that the threat of a missile attack against Hawaiʻi by North Korea is a highly unlikely possibility, according to the Hawaiʻi Emergency Management Agency.


“Leisure and business travelers planning a trip to Hawaiʻi should not be alarmed by the testing of this new Attack Warning Signal. Its implementation is consistent with the state’s longstanding policy to be prepared and informing the public well in advance of any potential threat to Hawaiʻi’s well-being.

“Travelers can plan and book their trips to the Hawaiian Islands confident that they will be safe and secure throughout their stay.”

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