The Hawaiian man who was fired after issuing a false missile alert last month has said that he was "100 percent sure" at the time that the attack was real.
The former state worker who is in his 50s spoke to reporters on the condition of anonymity fearing for his safety after receiving threats.
He said the on-duty call he received on January" January 13 did not sound like a drill and sounded like a real warning from US Pacific Command.
Several media reports stated that the man claimed he "didn't hear 'exercise' at all in that whole transmission." As soon as he realized his error, he "just wanted to crawl under a rock."
Once the man realised what had happened, he said he felt like he'd sustained a "body blow." Since then, he's reportedly been distressed to the point that he has had trouble eating and sleeping, reported Fox News.
Investigating officer Brig. Gen. Bruce Oliveira explained when the mistake was realized, the employee "froze" and "seemed confused," adding that another employee had to resume his duties and send a correction message.
The ex-worker reportedly had at least two previous incidents in which he mistook drills for real-world events, including for tsunami and fire warnings. However, the man denied, saying that he wasn't aware of any performance problems.
On January" January 13, Hawaiian citizens received an emergency alert on their phones that read, "BALLISTIC MISSILE THREAT INBOUND TO HAWAII. SEEK IMMEDIATE SHELTER. THIS IS NOT A DRILL."
Approximately 38 minutes following the alert, the Hawaii authority took to Twitter to inform that there was, "NO missile threat" to the state.
The White House issued a statement on the false alarm, noting that United States President Donald Trump had been briefed on the incident.