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Storms can be scary and disruptive, but having a proper storm shelter can make a big difference in keeping you and your loved ones safe.

Here are some frequently asked questions to help you prepare:

What types of storm shelters are there?

Basement shelters: Often the most affordable option, providing good protection from tornadoes and severe winds. Ensure your basement is waterproofed and has proper ventilation.

Above-ground shelters: Prefabricated shelters offer protection from tornadoes and some windstorms. Choose one anchored securely to withstand strong winds.

Interior safe rooms: Reinforced rooms within your home can offer protection from tornadoes and windstorms. Consult a qualified contractor for proper construction.

Where should I place my storm shelter?

Basement shelters: Ideally located in the center or away from exterior walls.

Above-ground shelters: Install on level ground, away from trees, power lines, and other hazards. Securely anchor it to prevent uplift or movement.

Interior safe rooms: Choose an interior room on the lowest level, preferably without windows or exterior doors.

What should I stock in my storm shelter?

Essentials: First-aid kit, non-perishable food and water for at least 3 days, battery-powered radio, flashlight, extra batteries, blankets, toilet paper, medications, games or activities for children.

Comfort items: Pillows, sleeping bags, books, cards, etc.

How do I prepare for using my storm shelter?

Have a family plan: Discuss shelter location, escape routes, and communication plan with everyone in your household.

Practice drills: Conduct regular drills to ensure everyone knows how and where to go when a storm warning is issued.

Keep the shelter clear and accessible: Avoid storing clutter that could impede entry or movement within the shelter.

Additional tips:

Charge your phone and other electronic devices beforehand.

Bring important documents like IDs and insurance papers in waterproof containers.

Have a battery-powered or crank-operated radio for updates and emergency information.

Stay calm and follow the instructions of local authorities during a storm.

Remember, having a storm shelter is just one step in being prepared. Staying informed about weather alerts and practicing safety measures are crucial for keeping yourself and your loved ones safe during storms.