Underground Tornado Shelter: Avoid Total Devastation with a Tornado Shelter

An underground tornado shelter serves as a temporary cover during a twister. Depending on the design and size, it can become a temporary home after the devastation. They can also be useful as protection for other windstorms such as a hurricane. Many survivalists also equip these to serve as their survival bases, stocking them with food, water and other essentials in the event of a major catastrophe. 

Using an underground tornado shelter for more than one purpose saves money and maximizes the use of available space. This is especially important in areas where the risk of twisters or other disasters is rare. One use that your underground bunker can serve is as a wine cellar. Some persons even use it as a food storage cellar.

You should always take into consideration the size of your family, as you want to be comfortable, especially during a storm. This is especially important, as you may need to use it for more than just a few hours if the situation is bad. Having safety supplies handy, that is, already in stock in case of eventualities makes sense. It is wise to periodically check the unit and the supplies as you do not want any surprises when you are ready to use it.


Currently, there are two types of these shelters, those that are fully underground and those that are partially underground. The partially underground type has its advantages and disadvantages. The main reasons why these may be worth considering are:

  • It is possible to build them in areas with high water tables which can be a deterrent to fully underground units
  • They are generally easier to get to and to enter during an emergency
  • These types are safer than shelters that are above ground but not quite as secure as those fully underground
  • They can cost a little less to build

Of course, you will need to leave your house to get to cover. This is not always possible depending on the health and ages of the persons in your home. Sometimes, a windstorm occurs so quickly, you just cannot get to safety quickly enough.

Why Build an Underground Tornado Shelter

While there are different types of shelters that are useful in a tornado or hurricane, the underground tornado shelter is the best. When done according to the proper standards, it will last for years. Best of all, because it is underground there is no likelihood of a windstorm blowing it away. It also provides good cover against debris. The most important aspect of this type of structure is to ensure that the door is made of reinforced material that is difficult to uproot. The doors normally lie level with the ground with no space for the wind to get under.

Safety Issues

Whether you buy the underground shelter, which is normally a prefabricated design or build your own, you need to pay attention to safety concerns. You must be able to get out after the storm is over. As such, proper care is necessary to ensure that you or other members of your family can easily open the door. Also, ensure that you have a way out just in case you cannot open the entryway when you need to due to a blockage. For this reason, it is also important to have some sort of communication device so you can call for help if necessary. You also need to have an air system in place to ensure that you can get fresh air while seeking cover. Getting professional help to set up this system is a good idea. You also need to make sure that they meet the standards of FEMA and other agencies such as the National Storm Shelter Association.

For anyone who lives in a tornado or hurricane zone and where the water table does not prevent it, building an underground tornado shelter is a good way to prepare for these disasters. Always ensure that you have a permit to construct one before you start the project. 

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