And what NOT ...
About what type of shelter to buy...
First, About buying a storm shelter
Question: Your shelters are steel, what about lightning?
Answer: They're extremely safe. Because of the "Faraday Effect".
When should we go into our shelter?
Answer: With the new Doppler Radar and Nexrad, You don't need to run in at the first crack of lightning. But, listen to the TV or a weather alert receiver, The minute you hear a warning for your area, take cover. Radio Shack and other electronic supply stores offer a "SAME" based receiver that lets you set up just counties in your area. Men, don't try to set out and watch for the tornado, they can come straight down on you without warning. Get it your shelter, secure it, and stay there!
Answer: It's very simple. We add a 1/2" electric coupler on the top side of each shelter. Even at the install if you're not ready to run in electric, the access to it will only be about one foot down. So, you can run it later if you'd wish.... and is recommended because
How can I hook up an alternate power source?
Answer: A very good question and very important one. You can always take flashlights, but without electrical power, you won't be able to operate a TV to see what's going on. We recommend a power inverter and battery backup. Get a small RV deep-cell battery, Wal-Mart has some for $35. Then get a power inverter (changes 12volt to 110) can be bought from different companies, Radio Shack, Wal-Mart. When hooking up, run at least one set of lights to the inverter which is connected to the battery. Use a 1.5 amp maintainer/charger on your battery (at Wal-Mart for about $30) to keep the battery up at all times. Running it this way if house power fails, you'll still have power. A great TV, even HD, can be found at target.com for about $179. Battery operated or plug in. It's a small 7" screen. You'll need to run an external cable for it to work good. Also, an amplified antenna mounted outside up high is needed.
Concrete shelter with multiple cracks.
Concrete was the original way of building shelters. But, things change, new and better products arise, new ways of doing things. Debris kill more people in tornadoes than the actual wind. If a shelter is sticking part out of the ground, that portion is subject to flying debris. Concrete shelters can also draw water into them. Fiberglass, like concrete, won't give to earth movements. They normally crack and start leaking. We've read many articles on this fact. An Oklahoma newspaper stated about their Health Dept. had bought six concrete shelters in the past two years and four have had to be replaced. They didn't name the company. It's why we use steel.
Where's the safest place to get during a tornado?
Anywhere fully underground is best! If not, a center room on the bottom floor. Also, it seems a new popular hide-out is laying inside the bathtub. If you go to a center room, cover yourself with something to protect you from glass and other objects. If you're caught outside, go to a ditch, anything below the normal surface. Mobile home ? leave. Car? drive to avoid the direction and stay in it.
Blancard Springs Caverns
To see what kind of risk your in, see the map at the bottom of this page
There are many types and styles. Buyer Beware! FEMA has not yet set any codes for regulations for storm shelter companies to adhere to for underground shelter design. Companies stating "FEMA APPROVED" are false advertising! See home page.
In Ground is the
safest type of shelter
The new "EF" scale vs. the old/standard "F" scale
I used PVC to run electric into mine.
How's the best way to hook up electricity in our shelter?
A man standing in a wire mesh cage.
Call us! 501-920-7460
Steel VS. Concrete and fiberglass
Underground shelters vs. above-ground shelters and safe rooms
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) states that “being completely underground is the best place to be in a tornado.” Underground shelters fulfill NOAA’s two most important requirements to staying safe in a tornado: being as low to the ground and putting as many barriers between yourself and the outdoors as possible. For this reason, underground shelters and basements remain the number one option when seeking shelter in a severe storm or tornado.
First off... Think safety first, NOT convenience! No, it's not convenient to run to a shelter in your back yard. It's easier to step into above ground saferoom it your garage or in a underground shelter in your garage floor. People have been killed or trapped in both types. Where is your lawn mower, weed eater, gas cans stored? What is above that can cover you with debris? What if a fire starts? Things to think about.