(WTNH) — The National Weather Service conducts routine tsunami alert warnings in the form of text messages, website banners, and app push alerts on a monthly basis to ensure that the technology is working properly. These systems are routinely tested to be able to warn the public in case a natural disaster is imminent.
Those warnings are pushed through to a third party app, called AccuWeather, which then distributes them to the public. Typically, those tests are not distributed to the public, and are carefully labeled with “TEST” as to not to create panic.
This is a test that is routinely conducted monthly.— NWS Miami (@NWSMiami) February 6, 2018
On Tuesday morning around 8:30 a.m., social media was a buzz after many people in Connecticut received a weather text on their phone which looked as though it came from WTNH News 8. The weather alert system which powers the News 8 weather text system, is published by the National Weather Service through a partnership with the AccuWeather app, and not through our team of Storm Team 8 meteorologists.
The National Weather Service Tsunami Warning this morning was a TEST. No Tsunami warning is in effect for the East Coast of the U.S.— AccuWeather (@accuweather) February 6, 2018
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This false tsunami warning also affected the East Coast as well as parts of the Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean. A few weeks ago, residents in Hawaii were set into panic mode with a false emergency alert warning of an incoming missile.
We have been receiving reports that an erroneous tsunami alert across New England. Please note there is NO TSUNAMI THREAT FOR New England.— NWS Boston (@NWSBoston) February 6, 2018
The National Weather Service is working on an investigation as to how this happened.
***THERE IS NO TSUNAMI WARNING***
A Tsunami Test was conducted earlier this morning, that did have TEST in the message. We are currently trying to find out how a message went out as a warning. We will update you when we find out more.— NWS New York NY (@NWSNewYorkNY) February 6, 2018