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Arkansas Living April 2012 : Page-20

A High Risk State for Tornadoes Source: National Weather Service Storm Prediction Center Below-ground shelters There’s nothing safer than being un-derground in a tornado. While offering the ultimate in protection from even the most powerful twister, modern subterranean sanc-tuaries hardly resemble your grandmother’s concrete bunker. They’re now available in shapes from domes to boxes and are made of non-traditional materials such as plastic and coated steel. They often include bat-tery-powered lights and benches. Optional accessories might include a chemical toilet, carpeting or a telephone jack. Year 






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(9 &#1f;&#1a;&#1a;&#1f;&#1a; A below-ground tornado shelter awaits installation on the driveway as the hole for it is excavated in a Conway backyard. Below-ground shelters can be one of the least expensive options for protecting your family, beginning at $2,000, but much de-pends on the design and the installation lo-cation. Unlike the old-fashioned cellars, the new below-ground shelters are no longer installed only outside. The least expensive route for an under-the-home shelter is in-stallation during new construction, but some are designed to be retrofi tted into existing garages. To do the retrofi t, the concrete is cut, a hole is dug, the shelter is placed, the hole is fi lled, the concrete patched and the cars pulled back in. Outside of the residence, the location of the shelter is critically important. For quick access and to minimize the danger from fl y-ing debris, it should be located as close to the home as possible. Quick access is not the only factor in placing an underground shelter. There may be buried gas lines, telephone cables or oth-er utilities in the way. And if the ground is mostly rock, installation costs can increase considerably. In these cases, homeowners 20  , $5.$16$6/,9,1* APRIL 2012 Photo by Joseph Roitz

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