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Thursday, January 18, 2018
January 18, 2018 News Read
By Andrew Walden @ 7:18 PM :: 6096 Views

Full Text: Speaker Saiki Opening Day Remarks

Opening Day: Kouchi Claims Senators will work for Public Good

Full Text: House Republican Opening Day Remarks

FEMA: Hawaii Did Not Call Until 8:30AM

Ward Introduces Bill Mandating 'Shelter-in-Place' Drills at Schools

Bizarre News: Honolulu selected to join national What Works Cities initiative

State breaks ground for new Kapalama Container Terminal

Maui Recycling Center Shut Down Due to State Non-Payment

Hawaii v. Trump attorney to speak at UH Manoa

Not an ‘oops’ button: Missile alert took many clicks, long scroll state never mentioned

KHON: …So far we’ve taken a look at two different screenshots that emergency officials say staff turn to when it’s time to send out a test or real emergency alert.


This matches page two of 'IPAWS User Experience'

This matches page three of 'IPAWS User Experience'

Always Investigating uncovered those were just two small pieces of a much bigger puzzle.

The Hawaii Emergency Management Agency recently changed vendors last fall for its emergency alert software. While emergency officials wouldn’t say who they use now, we traced past and recent messages to AlertSense, one of many FEMA-approved vendors nationwide.

Neither AlertSense nor HI-EMA are confirming the vendor partnership, citing security, but AlertSense did walk us through a standard system, one that has fail-safe after fail-safe built in.

HI-EMA first said the user who sent the false alarm from an incoming-missile message template had screen options that looked something like blue-text hotlinks. Then HI-EMA changed the handout to one that looked more like a black-and-white drop-down menu.

First officials said one click sent the doomsday message. Then it was two clicks, with the second click to confirm.

But Always Investigating has learned it was far more complex than that, and the crisis could have been averted at many screen views along that process….

PDF: Walk through the screens to send alert

read … Not an ‘oops’ button: Missile alert took many clicks, long scroll state never mentioned

FEMA: Hawaii Did Not Call Until 8:30AM

AP: …It took Hawaii officials more than 20 minutes to contact federal authorities to seek guidance after realizing they had sent out a bogus alert saying there was a missile headed toward the islands.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency told The Associated Press Wednesday that it received the call from Hawaii at 8:30 a.m.

FEMA spokeswoman Jenny Burke says federal employees gave guidance during that call….

read … 8:30AM

FEMA joins investigation into false missile alert

KHON: … FEMA will launch an after-action review, while the Federal Communications Commission is spearheading a public safety investigation.

The FCC is currently flying two representatives to Hawaii to work closely with the Hawaii Emergency Management Agency. It will also investigate why some cell phones did not receive the text alert.

FEMA provides the system that serves as the backbone for the state’s alert system, so it wants to know what went wrong….

Schatz says the findings of the FCC’s and FEMA’s reviews will align with the state’s recommendations, which are expected in the next two months….  (How could he possibly know that?)

AP: Hawaii delegation briefed on false alert

read … FEMA joins investigation into false missile alert

Schatz: Ige Must Fire HI EMA Brass

AP: …A timeline shows Hawaii officials botched efforts to immediately correct a false missile alert over the weekend, taking more than 20 minutes to contact federal authorities for approval they didn’t need and then taking another 15 minutes to cancel the alert that was sent to mobile devices statewide.

The astonishing error and dismal response has prompted both state and federal investigations and left one of the state’s U.S. senators wondering aloud if top brass at the Hawaii Emergency Management Agency should be replaced.

“I think (Gov.) David Ige has a tough decision in front of him, and it’s his call,” Sen. Brian Schatz told reporters Wednesday. Either way, the state has a long road ahead in restoring the public’s confidence in the alert system, the Democrat said.

Nearly 40 minutes passed between the time Hawaii officials fired off the bogus alert about an incoming missile over the weekend and the moment the notice was canceled….

read … Federal responsibility in nuclear attack alerts is unclear

Hanabusa: Military Should Control Nuclear Civil Defense Warnings

AP: …The confusion — and panic — have raised questions about whether any state should be solely responsible for notifying the public of such an event — especially as Washington and North Korea trade insults and threats.

Hawaii is the only state in the nation with a pre-programmed alert that can be quickly sent to wireless devices if a ballistic missile is heading toward the U.S. FEMA said Hawaii did not require its approval to cancel the alert on Saturday.

U.S. Reps. Colleen Hanabusa and Tulsi Gabbard, both of Hawaii, have asked the House Armed Services Committee to hold a hearing on the issue.

They said in a letter to the committee Tuesday that it’s understandable for states to have primary jurisdiction over warnings for floods, hurricanes and other natural disasters.

“However, when it comes to matters of national security, including whether a ballistic missile has been launched against the United States, one must question whether any state emergency management agency is best suited for that role,” the letter says.

CB: Schatz: Missile-Alert System Is Still Hawaii’s Kuleana

read … Hearing

City received 29 medical calls within 1 hour after alert

SA: Honolulu Emergency Medical Services received 29 calls in the hour following Saturday’s false missile alarm.

That’s substantially up from the average of between eight to 15 calls an hour, said spokeswoman Shayne Enright. Four calls were related to the panic and chaos that ensued following the nuclear bomb alert, she said….

Sean Shields, 51, suffered a massive heart attack minutes after saying his last goodbyes over the phone to his 10-year-old daughter and grown son while at Sandy Beach on East Oahu following the false missile alert. He was transported to Straub Medical Center at 9:31 a.m. in critical condition, EMS records show.

The other missile-alert-related injuries included an 89-year-old Waimanalo care home patient who fell and was transported in stable condition at 8:39 a.m.; a 37-year-old woman at 7-Eleven on Kaahumanu Street who got into a motor vehicle collision at 8:42 a.m., but refused transport; and a 38-year-old woman in Kailua, who was treated for anxiety and transported in stable condition at 9:13 a.m., according to EMS.

“We had two crews on calls with patients who stayed with the patients until the all-clear was given,” Enright said.

Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell previously said there were no apparent injuries or accidents related to the false alarm, except for a driver who damaged a golf cart following the alert. However, the Honolulu Police Department’s 911 dispatch system was overwhelmed with more than 5,000 telephone calls

read … City received 29 medical calls within 1 hour after alert

Missile Alert False Alarm

Another HSTA Coverup: Family demands answers after state hospital patient drowns in shower

KHON: Castle Perez was a patient at Hawaii State Hospital when he drowned in the shower.

A report by the Honolulu medical examiner says on Sept. 21, 2016, a staff member found Perez on his knees in what’s known as a tripod position, with his face submerged in a wash basin on the floor….

He was given CPR and rushed to another hospital, where he later died.

Now, more than a year later, family members tell KHON2 the state hasn’t given them any real answers, and they plan to sue.

“It doesn’t make sense, no,” said Sharlene Perez, Castle Perez’s mother. “Something happened. Something went wrong. I don’t believe my son committed suicide. Nope.”

The medical examiner says Perez died due to complications of near drowning. The manner of death remains undetermined….

“So somebody else did this to him?” KHON2 asked.

“I feel that way yeah,” she replied.

The family’s attorney, Peter Hsieh, says Perez was supposed to have one-on-one supervision.

There was someone outside the room at the time, and there are supposed to be video cameras in the hallways.

“Yet when asked, they said that there were no videos of any activities on that particular day. How do you not have videos if you have video cameras on the day that he died?” Hsieh said. “It’s ludicrous. It’s improbable, and it’s very suspicious.”

(Translation: More HSTA cover-up.)

read … Family demands answers after state hospital patient drowns in shower

Star-Adv: Maybe Lunatic Asylum Shouldn’t Allow Mailed-in Contraband 

SA: …For example, Administrator William May acknowledged that they are reviewing the institution’s policy about disseminating personal mail, a route through which a patient could receive contraband items. Currently, he said, mail is not opened by staff unless “we have a reason to suspect something may not be appropriate.”

A scan of online documents of various state and local forensic psychiatric centers shows that many do open mail in the presence of a staffer as the rule, rather than the exception. Handing over postal packages is seen as especially risky….

read … Mayyyybeeeee

Volunteers needed for Oahu’s annual homeless count

SA: Dozens, if not hundreds, of volunteers are still needed for next week’s census of Oahu’s homeless population — but the head of the annual Point in Time Count isn’t concerned.

“The target is around 500 (volunteers), but we use that as a target,” said Jen Stasch, director of Partners In Care, which is organizing this year’s Oahu count. “I would say we’re probably at about the 300 to 350 mark right now. Although it may not seem like it’s a lot of people, most of the volunteers have done this before, so they have experience.”…

To volunteer for next week’s Point in Time Count survey of Oahu’s homeless population, visit

To volunteer to count homeless people in Waikiki, East Honolulu or Sandy Beach/Makapuu, visit

read … Volunteer

Teenage mom programs crowded out at Maui High

MN: Every morning, Jada Apolo drops her 13-month-old daughter off at day care and heads to her first class at Maui High School.

Motherhood came sooner than expected for the 16-year-old junior, but she’s been able to stay in school thanks to the day care at Maui High, the only school on island that offers such a program.

“We can either be here at school with our day care, or we could be at home watching our child,” Apolo said. “It would just be a hard thing because then we’d have to give up our education to find a job to help pay for child care.”

But with the already crowded high school expecting 640 freshmen in the fall, officials are having to make tough calls — including cutting the day care and teen parents programs for the coming school year….

Maui, Kapaa and Konawaena high schools are the only public schools statewide with day care, according to Yap….

About 12 students this year use the day care and parenting programs, which share a large classroom separated into two spaces. Day care opens before classes and runs until 3:15 p.m. Apolo said she pays about $25 for a whole school year, a much more affordable rate than outside services…

read … Crowded

Reforming the Hawaii Public Utilities Commission

IM: The Senate has posted bills still on the table from last year, and also the first 50 or so bills introduced in 2018. For simplicity, the 2018 bills start with number 2001.

One of the bills deals with the length of time it takes for the Public Utilities Commission to render decisions. SB 2022 was introduced by Senator Lorraine Inouye and co-signed by nine other Senators….

“When a docket or other proceeding before the public utilities commission is initiated, the commission shall: (1) Take any initial action required of the commission within sixty days after the initiation of the proceeding; (2) Take any subsequent actions required of the commission within sixty days after the fulfilment of the requirements that trigger the action; and (3) Render a decision within one hundred eighty days after fulfilment of the final requirement in the proceeding.”

Many intervenors believe that SB2022 gets it correct in asserting that parties “lack access to the commission's procedure for prioritizing among multiple proceedings.”

Many intervenors want a better understanding of how dockets fit together, how they are prioritized, and what anticipated time-schedules are.

The bill touches upon a raw nerve regarding the length of time it takes for the Commission to make decisions. A related issue is the length of time it takes a developer to negotiate a power purchase agreement with the utility, versus the amount of time it takes for the Commission to render a decision….

read … Reforming the Hawaii Public Utilities Commission

Don’t Call Honolulu Rail A ‘Work in Progress’

CB: …let’s get real, liberate ourselves from the vacuous phrase “work in progress” and develop more refined and realistic terms to use when we consider how things get done, not done, or undone in Hawaii.

As a replacement for work in progress there should be four categories: work in sloth; work in retrogression; work in the ether; and, to use a Yiddish word, bupkis.….

read … Debacle

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