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updated: 2/4/2014 1:48 PM

Schaumburg schools lock down after police send mistaken emergency alert

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Daily Herald report

Schaumburg schools went on temporary lockdown Tuesday morning after the village's police department mistakenly issued a message stating an emergency situation was occurring in the community.

Police said the message inadvertently went out to school officials while the department was conducting a routine test of its emergency notification system. The message indicated that the situation required schools to initiate lockdowns.

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The message was supposed to indicate that it was a test, but instead only notified of a general emergency situation and asked for all public and private schools to immediately lock down.

"It was just an unfortunate mistake that the wrong message was sent out, but it was corrected immediately," Schaumburg police Sgt. John Nebl said.

Schaumburg Township Elementary District 54 locked down all of its schools -- both in and out of Schaumburg -- upon receiving the message at about 9:30 a.m., district spokeswoman Terri McHugh said.

She said schools were notified of the mistake within two minutes of the initial alert. The experience likely proved to be a useful test of each school's own emergency procedures, McHugh added.

McHugh said it was the first time Schaumburg police used this particular notification system for the schools, McHugh said.

Nebl said the system is designed to be the quickest way to notify schools of a problem, allowing them the greatest amount of time to respond.

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