Whether you believe in human-caused climate change or are just rattled by Mother Nature’s Sunday night temper tantrum, the fact is that North Texas has proven to be vulnerable to ugly damage from straight line winds and tornadoes. Don’t you just know that event planners would have been shivering in their stilettos if it had hit when a major fundraiser had been taking place?
If you’re thinking about rebuilding or undertaking a major residential resurrection, consider having a storm shelter. Sure, you probably won’t use it as a conversation piece at your next party, but you only need it once to prove its place in your life. Also, the peace of mind it provides redefines the word “invaluable.”
And once you have a storm shelter, plan ahead and include three-day supply of water, batteries, flashlights/lanterns, medication , a battery-operated radio, ear plugs, manual can opener, canned food and a portable safe for important documents. One family has their birth certificates, passports, voter’s certificates, etc. stowed away in their shelter. When they need to vote or travel, they just get it from their shelter. Their kids call their shelter “The Big Safe.” On the other hand, if a major storm wipes out your home, those documents might be cast to the wind. ”
In getting your storm shelter, check with people who already have ’em. They’ll tell you the good, the bad and the ugly. One storm shelter company will even move your steel room to your new home if you decide to move. They’ll even check to make sure that you’re okay.
And for you bargain hunters, check the FEMA website. The government may actually help defray the cost.
Another factor is what to do when you get the warnings. While media outlets have stressed the importance of creating a game plan in case of a fire, you need a POA if a tornado warning is issued. Where to go when the sirens and calls blast? Have a drill that includes elderly members of the household, pets and children. Suggestion: Don’t make it a big deal. Just calmly say, “Let’s go to the safe place.” If the others hear panic in your voice, it will only add to the stress level.
Another suggestion: The DSID is dealing with the tear-up of Thomas Jefferson High School and others. Let’s hope the officials will consider digging deep. Sure, it will cost more. But if the tornadoes had hit while school was in session, putting your heads on the desks wouldn’t have done much good. Consider underground parking or, at least, a gathering place for students and faculty that is steel enforced. And once again — yes, it’s gonna cost a bit more, but a safe place is priceless.
* Photo credit: Glenn Hunter