Thousands mistakenly warned of incoming tsunami

SEASIDE, Ore. – Thousands of people in and around the town of Seaside were warned a tsunami was about to strike their town, but it turned out to be a mistake.

On January 3, the City of Seaside conducted a regular test of its tsunami warning system. However, there was a malfunction, and thousands of citizens received an erroneous alert that a tsunami was going to hit the coast in about four hours.

Authorities said it appears the warning didn’t have the typical “this is only a test” message.

“We regret the error,” said Jon Rahl, public information officer for the city. “But it’s also a reminder of why we do these tests and run them throughout the year. Tests give us the opportunity to evaluate what’s working, and in this case what’s not.”

The city will continue with monthly warnings, hopefully without error, to remind everyone about the dangers of tsunamis.

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