Public Safety

No civil emergency in Polk County: Johnson County missing person alert goes awry

What was originally intended as a missing person alert in Johnson County triggered a false civil emergency alert on phones in Johnson, Polk and Iowa counties Monday night.

According to a news release from Johnson County Emergency Management, the mistaken alert was sent out shortly after 7:20 p.m. as a Wireless Emergency Alert stating: “civil emergency in this area until 8:45 p.m. EDT Take Shelter Now Polk-County.” The emergency message was originally intended to be an update on a missing person in Johnson County, according to the release.

JCEM stated that the third party vendor used to send Wireless Emergency Alerts throughout the state is investigating why the mishap occurred. Correct Emergency Alert messages had been sent for missing people in Johnson and Chickasaw Counties earlier Monday using the same system with no errors, according to the release.

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