The International Market Place security in Waikiki sent a false alarm shortly after noon today to store managers, saying there was an active shooter on the property and they should lock their doors and head to the back of the store.
The text message said, “This is not a test,” according to a manager at 3.1 Phillip Lim, a women’s clothing store.
“It was not very fun,” the manager said. About five to ten minutes after receiving the text, the manager got through to IMP security and was told it was a false alarm.
“Another false alarm,” she said, remembering the false missile alarm sent by a state employee last year.
Honolulu police later confirmed to media there was no active shooter and it was a mistake on the part of The International Market Place security.
Honolulu Police Department spokeswoman Michelle Yu said in an emailed statement, “There is NO active shooter threat. Shortly after noon today, a text was mistakenly sent to International Market Place businesses warning of an active shooter in the area. This was an error.”
The International Market Place said, “We regularly test our systems to ensure that we can communicate with our tenants in real time, and ensure the safety of our shoppers and diners, in the event of a real emergency. Today, during the routine test, a message was inadvertently sent to those registered in the system. We can confirm that nobody was in danger at any time, and we sincerely apologize to anyone impacted by this error. We are committed to reviewing our protocol to ensure this never happens again.”
Some shops locked their doors before they were told the alarm was false.
Bonnie Rauch, apparel department supervisor for Anthropologie, said, “The store manager actually got the call, and she ended up calling us right as we were getting the notice that it was a false alarm.”
Rauch said the store manager called her around noon and informed her of the procedure in case there was actually an active shooter, but Anthropologie remained open.
“I didn’t see any panic or anything … I think I saw one store across from us closing their doors but that was it,” Raueh said.