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Emergency Preparedness Checklist: 7 Items to Have in Your Storm Shelter

With an average of 1,200 tornadoes touching down in the United States every year, equipping your home with the full spectrum of safety measures is imperative. These precautions, however, do not end with the installation of an above ground storm shelter. Once your tornado shelter is in place, be sure to stock the structure with the following items.

Radio

Keep a battery-powered radio on hand to keep updated on the storm’s projection. Listening for weather alerts will inform you on how long to remain in your storm shelter.
Flashlights

A tornado could easily cause a power outage. Keeping multiple flashlights around, including a hand crank model will keep you out of the …

Top Considerations for Buying a Storm Shelter

It’s important to always be prepared, especially when it comes to serious weather conditions like tornadoes. Installing an above ground storm shelter will not only give you peace of mind for when disaster strikes, it could help save your life. For that reason alone, it’s vital to invest in only the highest quality tornado shelters you can find. Here are some considerations to bear in mind as you shop around for storm shelters.
Testing and Certification
Make sure that the company you work with goes through a rigorous testing procedure for each of their shelter models. You can tell if the builders are certified if they have established associations with independent organizations, such …

U.S. Tornado Destruction By the Numbers

There are 1,200 tornadoes in the U.S. every year on average, but in recent years they have been clustering far more often than usual. In the Southeastern states especially, tornado clusters have been extremely destructive and have caused multiple deaths and injuries just in recent months.

If you live in Tornado Alley or Southeastern states, you’ve surely seen the destruction firsthand and know how quickly these cyclones can appear.

Here’s some quantifiable data to show just how bad these storms can be:

On average, there’s only a 13-minute warning time before a tornado strikes. The can strike at any time, anywhere, as long as the …

Tornado Clusters on the Rise in the Southeastern United States

A single tornado can damage a mile-wide area for nearly 50 miles, which can be devastating to any person, animal, or building it its path. But tornado outbreaks, like the ones that struck the Southeast at the end of November, can wreak havoc on an even wider scale.

Over the course of just two days, at least three dozen tornadoes struck the states of Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, Tennessee, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Florida. So far, there have been seven confirmed deaths due to these tornadoes. Scientists and meteorologists have taken note of larger, more frequent clusters in recent years, but are not sure what the causes are.

Scientists have noted …

8 Warning Signs that a Tornado May be Underway

We’re living through that brief moment when hurricane season and tornado season overlap, which means that residents in the midwestern and southeastern areas of the U.S. need to be especially cautious.

When a tornado comes, there is often little time to lose. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration says thatthe average tornado warning airs just 13 minutes in advance. Unlike hurricanes, tornadoes are much more sporadic and unpredictable.

Emerging from powerful thunderstorms, tornadoes can come and go in seconds, leaving serious devastation behind them. While it’s common to think that tornadoes only happen in tornado alley, every state is potentially at risk of tornadoes.

One of they keys to being prepared for …

3 Situations When You’ll Wish You Had an Above Ground Storm Shelter

If you live in tornado alley, you’re no stranger to the devastating winds that can sweep through your property in a matter of seconds. Although standard tornado shelters are underground, which makes sense as tornado winds are less likely to penetrate your basement, these shelters can still experience damage from the structures above. If the house collapses or suffers damage, that’s bad news for anyone seeking safety in the storm shelter below.

While above ground storm shelters may not seem like the safest options, rest assured, new technologies and building constraints have allowed manufacturers to create both indoor and outdoor above ground storm shelters that can resist harsh conditions.

Plus, in …

TEDx: Why Storm Shelters Do Not Have to Be Underground Anymore

Popular opinion in many parts of the country is that when a tornado is bearing down on a community, the only safe place to take shelter is below ground. Joseph has found that this flies in the face of 15 years of research done at Texas Tech University’s National Wind Institute investigating the safety of above-ground storm shelters. He discusses findings from the Moore, OK, tragedy as well as several additional benefits of above-ground shelters. In addition, he shows video of TTU’s Debris Impact Facility firing 15-pound, 2″ by 4″ wood beams at 100 mph to show what tornadic debris can do to a normal home and how a storm shelter keeps occupants safe.

Valley Storm Shelters Featured on the Rick & Bubba Show

Valley Storm Shelters was recently featured on the Rick & Bubba show. Watch as Rick and Bubba put a storm shelter through a series of tests while their producer, Speedie, sits inside.

Oklahoma tornadoes: Aboveground shelters stood up in face of EF5 Moore tornado

Researchers who toured Moore after the May 20 tornado said above ground storm shelters held up well in the storm and can be a better choice than underground storm cellars.

Part of the terror of an EF5 tornado like the one that hit Moore on May 20 is the notion that nothing above ground can survive a direct hit and the 200 mph winds that rip homes off foundations.

But that’s not exactly true. Above ground storm shelters held up exceptionally well in the tornado and could be a better choice than a traditional underground storm cellar, said Larry Tanner, a research associate at the National Wind Institute …

What Are Saferooms

Saferooms are hardened structures specifically designed to meet the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) criteria and provide “near-absolute protection” in extreme weather events, including tornadoes and hurricanes.  In a typical resident installation the saferooms are anchored to the garage concrete slab or a concrete slab outside of the home.

Accordingly “FEMA strongly encourages homeowners and communities to build safe rooms, but cannot endorse or approve specific manufacturers or producers.” Saferooms manufactured by Valley Storm Shelters™ are among the strongest on the market. Each saferoom uses 1/4 inch steel plate (10.2 lbs per square foot) and 4” C- channel (5.4 lbs per linear foot) to construct our shelter. The C-channel …