Tornado Shelters as Tiny Houses

This holiday season seemed to be full of severe weather causing devastation across the Midwest United States. The 12 tornadoes in Texas not only killed 11 people and caused billions of dollars in damage, but they destroyed several towns and thousands of homes. Tornado shelters are not always built as part of a contemporary home, but homeowners can build their own shelters if they live in a tornado prone area.

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Tornado and storm shelters run the gamut from a simple basement or cement lined hole in the ground outfitted with food, water and first-aid items. Some tornado shelters are much more luxurious and are actually tiny homes that can be placed underground. While many people may not be able to afford something this extravagant or want to live underground, these types of shelters can act as another home for several people in case primary homes are destroyed.

Moore, OK, June 8, 2013 -- This new style storm shelter survived the May 20 EF5 tornado while most houses in the neighborhood did not. Many safety officials and FEMA Hazard Mitigation suggest the best place to be in this type of storm is underground. George Armstrong/FEMA

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Some of the most interesting tornado shelters I found are Atlas Survival Shelters. These galvanized, corrugated pipe shelters claim to have a 200 year lifespan and feature full bedrooms, bathrooms, several hatches and come in several diameters and lengths of up to 50 feet. The prices for these shelters start at around $50,000.

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Other features of these shelters include under floor storage, full kitchens, air intake pipes and Swiss made air filtration systems, AC/DC wiring, and mud rooms. A prepper’s dream come true, these shelters can also have optional radiation detectors, camera surveillance, solar panels and 300 to 5,000 gallon water tanks.

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Photos by Atlas Survival Shelters and FEMA

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Dave Rice - January 8, 2016 Reply

I think these underground Tornado shelters are exactly what is needed to protect people from extreme weather. The cost is prohibitive for most people but if several families get together it could be made affordable.

My big concern is for instance if you had one of these really nice shelters along the Mississippi river over the last week. Flooding would be a concern to me.

Illogicbuster - February 5, 2016 Reply

Just build a monolithic cabin or small 24′ monolithic dome. Doubles as a guest house and tornado shelter. Cheaper than the $50 underground (death trap during a flood) tube you showed.

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