Bulldog Man and I decided, if we lived in Tornado Alley, a tornado shelter was mandatory. Granted when we decided this, we were living in a rental home without a shelter. Each time a major (F3, F4, &F5) tornado came through; we would grab our bug out bags, the dog, and evacuate the area. In other words, drive the opposite direction for safety.
No more running!!!!
We purchased a home in the country; and the first thing we installed was a medium size (6X8) tornado shelter. Inside this shelter, we will place emergency supplies, i.e. communications, lights, first aid, water, food, tools, and protection. The shelter is registered with the Emergency Operations Center within our county; just in case our home and property are hit by a tornado, emergency personnel will come to our rescue within minutes of the storm.
Tornado shelters are normally used a couple of times during tornado season. In Oklahoma, tornado season generally runs from March 1st to July 1st ; with the month of May being the most prominent month. Time spent in the shelter is usually just a few minutes.
Our idea is to use part of the shelter (the area behind the stairs, and along that wall) as an area to store harvested vegetables and fruit (kind of like a root cellar). Bulldog Man and I will do some more research before moving forward with the idea of using the shelter as a root cellar.
Without further adieu, here’s the installation of our medium-sized tornado shelter.
Video #1 shows our contractor measuring, spray painting, digging, and leveling the location where we want our tornado shelter to be placed.
Video#2 tornado shelter arrives on a boom truck, is lifted into place, and once again leveled.
Video #3 lifting the top half of the shelter to remove particles of concrete and dust from edge, adding water proofing adhesive and finally adding nonskid strips to the stairs. Then re-attach the roof, and secure the top with steel fastening straps.
Video#4 re-attach the roof, level once more, and secure the top with steel fastening straps.
Video#5 filling in soil, packing it around the shelter, and cleaning up.
Video#6 final product, now time to add our emergency supplies……and possibly food storage (root cellar style).