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Double red alert

A hidden phaser is revealed during double red alert

Double red alert was a rarely used alert signal for extremely dire situations, especially when a nearly instantaneous response was required. A double red alert was technically equivalent to a red alert, except that it conveyed a higher sense of urgency. The alarms and lights for a double red alert were the same as for a standard red alert.

Captain Kirk once declared a double red alert during off-hours, when Spock detected the distinctive sound of a phaser on overload hidden in Kirk's quarters. Realizing that there were only a few seconds available to evacuate that section of the ship, Kirk ordered a double red alert.

Kirk remained in his cabin to search for the phaser, which, ironically, became visible when it was silhouetted inside the alert light fixture. Kirk was able to drop the phaser into an emergency disposal tube just before it exploded. (TOS: "The Conscience of the King")

This alert signal wasn't referred to in the final revised draft of the script for "The Conscience of the King". Instead, that teleplay included a stage direction which stated, "Immediately the red light starts flashing and alarm bells start ringing, both in here [i.e., Kirk's quarters] and outside." Conversely, double red alert was used extensively in the final draft script of the episode "Court Martial", but those references were thereafter changed to instead refer to simply red alert.

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