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Mizzou Sends Out False Tornado Alert

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COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) – The University of Missouri in Columbia had to recall an errant tornado alert that turned out to be part of a routine National Weather Service test.

The Columbia Missourian reports that the university sent the erroneous text messages and automated phone calls Tuesday afternoon to students and employees who subscribe to its emergency alert system. The messages warned of a possible tornado in Boone County.

A university spokesman says the university was not aware in advance that the Weather Service planned a statewide drill as part of National Severe Weather Week. A campus contractor automatically issues the emergency alerts.

E-mail alerts included the disclaimer that the tornado warning was a test. The text and phone messages were prerecorded.

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