Hawaii Prepares for North Korea Missile Attack

Hawaii Prepares for North Korea Missile Attack

While chances are low, the Aloha state has created an emergency plan for the public.

By Katelyn Newman , Digital Producer, Staff Writer July 21, 2017

This July 4, 2017, file photo distributed by the North Korean government shows what was said to be the launch of a Hwasong-14 intercontinental ballistic missile, ICBM, in North Korea's northwest. (Korean Central News Agency/Korea News Service via AP, File)

The North Korean government released this photo July 4, 2017, showing what was said to be the launch of a Hwasong-14 intercontinental ballistic missile in North Korea’s northwest. (KOREAN CENTRAL NEWS AGENCY/KOREA NEWS SERVICE VIA AP, FILE)

Hawaii is developing an emergency plan in the unlikely event that North Korea fires a missile toward the Aloha state, according to local officials.

The Hawaii Emergency Management Agency announced it will release Friday its newest public information and education campaign to educate islanders on what to do on short notice if a North Korean intercontinental ballistic missile heads toward the islands.



“We do not want to cause any undue stress for the public; however, we have a responsibility to plan for all hazards,” Vern Miyagi, Hawaii Emergency Management Agency administrator, said in a release reported Thursday by the Star Advertiser.

The plan, which the agency has worked on since December 2016, includes instructions for residents and tourists on what to do when they hear certain sirens, where to go and how to set up proper communications with family and friends.

Tensions between the United States and North Korea have escalated in recent weeks after Kim Jong Un successfully tested an intercontinental ballistic missile on July 4, which landed in the Sea of Japan. U.S. intelligence officials said the test proved that the isolated nation could launch a missile 4,000 miles, putting all of Alaska into the realm of possibility, but unable to reach Hawaii or the other 48 states.

Officials estimate that, if North Korea develops a longer-reaching missile. it could reach Hawaii in 20 minutes, leaving about 12 to 15 minutes to warn locals.

“We don’t know the exact capabilities or intentions of the North Korean government, but there is clear evidence that it is trying to develop ballistic missiles that could conceivably one day reach our state,” Miyagi continued.

As a result of the increasing threat, the U.S. State Department plans to ban Americans from traveling to to North Korea, sources tell the Associated Press.

 Intercontinental ballistic missiles were last on Hawaii Emergency Management’s threat list in the 1990s, removed only after the Soviet Union crumbled.

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Tags: North KoreaUnited StatesHawaiiAlaskamissilesnational securityU.S. intelligenceKim Jong Unmilitaryemergency planning