A phony emergency broadcast aired in California Thursday and terrified residents. Rumors the world was going to end Saturday, Sept. 23 were peddled by conspiracy theorist David Meade. While some people were dubious about his claim, the ominous message that interrupted TV programing Thursday freaked a lot of people out.
“Realize this, extremely violent times will come,” a man’s voice said, according to a video of the alert.
One viewer, Stacy Laflamme of Orange County, was in the middle of watching HGTV channel when the emergency alert flashed.
“It almost sounded like Hitler talking,” she told the Orange County Register Thursday. “It sounded like a radio broadcast coming through the television.”
Another person was surprised by the alert, but figured it was a hoax.
“I was definitely startled, ’cause the volume increased exponentially,” Erin Mireles told the publication. “I wasn’t alarmed in the sense of thinking something was wrong, ’cause I assumed it was some sort of hack. My channel changed back to Bravo after a couple minutes.”
The fake apocalyptic message was apparently caused by multiple radio stations conducting an emergency test at the same time. “With these tests, an emergency tone is sent out to initiate the test,” a spokesperson for cable provider Cox Communications said. “After the tone is transmitted, another tone is sent to end the message. It appears that the radio station (or stations) did not transmit the end tone to complete the test.”
“The radio station that sent the alert didn’t turn off their programming when the alert ended,” Cox Communications said. “For a short time, some heard programming that was on the radio.”
The ominous alert was shut down as soon as possible. “We don’t want to alarm anyone with any false emergency alerts,” the spokesperson said.
It’s not clear where the erroneous doomsday message came from — of it was an accident or done on purpose. “We have confirmed that we were fed an incorrect audio file,” a spokesman for Spectrum, another cable provider, explained to the OC Register.
Even though some people are worried about the world possibly ending Saturday, Meade said Sept. 23 is just a sign and not Armageddon. People twisted his words.
“People tend to read sensationalistic headlines, and not go to the source. My book is the source. They don’t even read it. My book’s updates are on my Planet X News.com site – they don’t read those, either,” Meade told International Business Times in an email Thursday. “As Donald Trump would say, this is ‘fake news’ they write about me. Nothing you can do about it really. Just stay a cool customer.”
However, Meade argued the environmental tragedies – such as the earthquakes in Mexico and hurricanes in the Caribbean are related to the metaphorical end of the world, as people know it today. Meade cited the solar eclipse last month as the start to all the natural disasters.
“Ever since the Great American Solar Eclipse of Aug. 21 we have been hit by a continued series of judgments,” he said. “Jewish thought is that solar eclipses are a sign or harbinger of judgment against gentile nations.”
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