Residents of the entire state of Connecticut were ordered to evacuate yesterday, after someone in the state emergency management department accidentally "pressed the wrong button" and sent out the evacuation message to broadcasters (thanks to Gary for forwarding the story). Even though TV and radio listeners were told that the state was being evacuated, nobody paid any attention. The police didn't even receive any calls about it. Obviously Connecticut needs to revise its emergency evacuation message. Something more along the lines of 'the state has been invaded by Martians' proved quite effective in nearby New Jersey in 1938.
Yesterday's incident recalls the time on February 20, 1971 when the National Emergency Warning Center in Colorado mistakenly told broadcasters that the country was under nuclear attack. The nuclear alert included the proper code word, 'HATEFULNESS', which meant that broadcasters should have treated it as real, but almost all of them just ignored it. Great to know people take these emergency alerts so seriously.