The Latest: Hawaii test of attack siren draws little notice

A Hawaii Civil Defense Warning Device, which sounds an alert siren during natural disasters, is shown in Honolulu on Wednesday, Nov. 29, 2017. The alert system is tested monthly, but on Friday Hawaii residents will hear a new tone designed to alert people of an impending nuclear attack by North Korea. The attack warning will produce a different tone than the long, steady siren sound that people in Hawaii have grown accustomed to. It will include a wailing in the middle of the alert to distinguish it from the other alert, which is generally used for tsunamis. (AP Photo/Caleb Jones)

HONOLULU - The Latest on Hawaii's first test of a system to warn people of a possible nuclear attack from North Korea (all times local):

1:30 p.m.

Hawaii's first test of a siren to alert residents and tourists to a possible nuclear attack from North Korea didn't draw much notice.

Karen Lindsay and Carolyn Fujioka didn't react to the warning system as they ate lunch Friday in Ala Moana Park, where the wailing siren was audible.

About a mile away, in more tourist-heavy Waikiki, the sirens were barely heard.

Lindsay vaguely remembers hearing the sirens during the Cold War era. She says the new siren, if it sounds for real, essentially gives people only a 20-minute warning that a bomb will strike.

She wonders where she's supposed to go if that happens but that it would likely mean they're "dead meat."

Lindsay says the siren is probably best intended as an alert to say your last goodbyes.


1 p.m.

Hawaii officials will investigate if sirens intended to warn people of a possible nuclear attack from North Korea weren't loud enough after their first test.

The sirens were barely heard Friday in the busy tourist area of Waikiki, where few people reacted when the attack warning system sounded for the first time since the Cold War.

Officials also will check if any warning sirens didn't operate as they should.

Vern Miyagi with the Hawaii Emergency Management Agency said early reports indicate the test went well, but the agency could get complaints later.

He says 385 warning sirens are located throughout the islands. Miyagi says how well someone hears them depends on how close they are to a siren.


11:50 a.m.

Hawaii conducted its first test of a siren to warn the public of a possible nuclear attack from North Korea.

Officials say the state is the first to test such a warning system since the end of the Cold War. The wailing siren sounded for a minute Friday after the usual testing of a system to alert people to natural disasters.

The move comes the same week North Korea fired a powerful nuclear-capable intercontinental ballistic missile that some observers believe could reach the U.S. mainland.

Hawaii Gov. David Ige said the possibility of a strike is remote but that people have to be prepared.

Officials delayed testing by a month to ensure residents and visitors were informed. Some still expressed confusion this week about what they were supposed to do after hearing the attack siren.


10 p.m.

Hawaii is reinstating the system intended to warn people of an impending nuclear strike just days after North Korea launched its most powerful missile yet.

The state on Friday will test a new tone for an attack in its siren warning system. The wailing sound of the attack warning will come after the long, steady siren for tsunamis and other natural disasters.

The governor says the test will ensure the public knows what they should do in case of an imminent attack. Officials say if a missile is launched, people would have less than 20 minutes to take shelter.

But some residents and visitors have expressed confusion about what they were supposed to do after hearing the siren.

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