Keep your family safe with one of these durable, high-quality shelters when disaster strikes.
Staying Home’s Hide-Away shelter installs above ground and cleverly collapses into itself to minimize space requirements when stowed, requiring only 19 inches of depth when not in use. It can be deployed in moments and secured to a concrete slab with simple drop-and-twist anchors that make the structure secure against an F5 tornado. Made from 0.25-inch-thick steel, these structures are also available with bullet-resistant walls rated against .30-06 rounds and are even available as classroom additions large enough to protect 25 to 30 children from storms or active shooters.
Survive-A-Storm shelters are made right here in the United States and sport 0.25- inch-thick welded steel walls and heavy-duty door locks that are secure against 250-mph winds. Survive-A-Storm produces shelters for a wide variety of applications and a wide variety of budgets. Its designs can be installed aboveground and bolted to a concrete slab or buried underground. Sizes range from the four-person Twister Pod to 100-person community shelters and beyond. For larger storm shelters, Survive-A-Storm’s website offers a “Bunker Builder” feature that allows the user to choose customized options for their shelter, such as tile floors, televisions, sinks, toilets, showers and furniture as well as nuclear/biological/chemical filtration systems.
Red Dog Shelters are mobile storm shelters designed to protect up to 32 occupants in a hurry. The unique Red Dog design turns the destructive force of high winds into a stabilizing anchor—the faster the wind, the more stable the safe room. The shelter’s walls and roof are constructed from 0.5-inch-thick A36 steel plates. Its unique shape also adds significant strength to resist deformation due to impacts by windborne objects as large as 25,000 pounds.
The two-person Tornado Safe Room may be installed in any open space over a concrete slab. One great place is under a stairwell, as shown. Constructed of 10-gauge steel that’s reinforced with angle iron supports, this compact low profile model is the perfect size for two seated occupants as well as their small pets or valuables. The top of the shelter is built from 0.25-inch-thick steel plating, and the door is secured via three sliding-bolt latches. The Tornado Safe Room can easily be installed in a garage, a utility room or any other similar space with 16 heavy-duty concrete anchor bolts that provide an aggregate 56 tons of holding power.
SteelSafe Shelters’ underground units are prefabricated shelters designed to drop into existing structures or new construction. They come in regular, medium and extra-large sizes to accommodate from four to 14 people. The company’s most popular design installs in a garage or carport and has a flush sliding door. Each shelter has carpeted benches and steps as well as a fluorescent light and a fan. Every weld is dye-tested for guaranteed security and strength. They are designed to be installed under a roof and are compact enough to fit underneath a parked car. So long as the car is pulled as far forward as possible in a standard garage, the shelter is accessible in a hurry without moving the vehicle.
Tornado Tough units are designed for family-sized groups seeking shelter near their home, school or workplace. These heavy-duty storm shelters are manufactured from rebar-reinforced concrete set on 12-inch centers and are all designed to be installed underground. There are shelter designs that install flush for garage locations or those that sport an angled front slope for outdoor use. Tornado Tough offers shelter designs that can accommodate between 16 and 22 people and are spacious enough to sleep inside during a natural disaster or other emergency.
Atlas Survival Shelters provides a wide variety of shelter designs, but the company’s most popular models are built from 10- or 12-foot-diameter corrugated steel pipe. All Atlas shelters are buried a minimum of 10 feet deep and maintain a year-round temperature of between 56 and 58 degrees Fahrenheit. Atlas shelters can be buried up to 42 feet deep and have an estimated lifespan of 200 years. These shelter designs also include hidden second entrances as well as military-grade air-filtration systems.
Hardened Structures specializes in the planning, design and construction of underground bunkers, fortified homes, survival communities and deep-earth bunkers—all kept confidential for the safety of the prospective buyers in the event of a cataclysmic disaster. Customizable options include underground survival complexes discreetly installed beneath private dwellings as well as the ballistic hardening of aboveground components. Hardened Structures even fabricates shielded rooms that protect against an electromagnetic pulse, or EMP. Whether you want to fortify your home or build a separate shelter, Hardened Structures can safeguard you and your family against a variety of emergency scenarios.
Tornados devastate a number of American communities each year while hurricanes regularly affect our coastlines. When the time comes, seeking shelter that will withstand a storm’s fury or societal unrest is paramount. In the inevitable face of weather gone wild or citizens running amok, American ingenuity brings us a lot of options for prefab shelters for budgets both large and small.
With some forethought, you can drop a shelter in a spot that is easily accessible in an emergency. At that point, your family can bring a good book, some board games and a flashlight to while away the time as Mother Nature wipes the landscape clean nearby. In some areas,there are government grants to help offset the purchase price for a shelter, and little brings peace of mind better than having a safe and reliable refuge that’s readily accessible when disaster strikes.
- RELATED STORY: Tips on Surviving Nature’s Deadly Storms
- RELATED STORY: Storm Survival: Thrive and Survive in Disaster
For More Information
Red Dog Shelters
Tornado Safe Room
Atlas Survival Shelters
- RELATED STORY: How To Weather The Worst Storms
- RELATED STORY: 10 Components of the Ultimate Survival Shelters
This article was originally published in the SURVIVOR’S EDGE™ Winter 2016 edition. Subscription is available in print and digital editions here.
Know the best routes to get home and to get out during a disaster!
by Robert A. Sadowski / Dec 4, 2015