In a weather emergency, take steps to protect yourself and your family by creating a storm shelter, in the crawl space below your house that isn't deep enough for a basement. When you must take immediate shelter from a storm, the ideal location is away from windows, in a central location in your home. Whether for a few hours or even days, be prepared with supplies in a safe refuge until the storm passes.
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Things you need
- Weather radio
- Blankets or sleeping bags
- Emergency preparedness kit
- Battery-operated lamp
Create an area in the crawl space that's clear of debris and isn't located beneath large, heavy pieces of furniture on the above floor.
Assemble a disaster supply kit that includes one gallon of water per person, per day, for at least three days. Also include a three-day supply of nonperishable food, a battery-powered radio or television and extra batteries, first-aid kit, sanitation items, matches and waterproof container, whistle, extra clothing, kitchen accessories and cooking utensils, including a can opener, photocopies of credit and identification cards, cash, eyeglasses, contact lens solutions and hearing aid batteries.
Make a list of basic items that members of your household may need during an emergency, including medicines or security items for children. Store the list in the emergency supply kit.
Identify your community's warning systems and evacuation routes, and know how the community sends out important communication.
Gather extra blankets and sleeping bags, and store them in the shelter.
Place a battery-operated lamp in the shelter, with backup batteries.
Update the contents of your emergency kit and shelter as needed.
Tips and warnings
- Heavy objects can fall though the floor if a tornado strikes your house.
- Below-ground shelters must be designed to avoid accumulating water during rain storms. Avoid seeking shelter in a crawl space if there's a flood threat, such as the heavy rains accompanying severe windstorms.
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