Prepare before the storm: Tornado safe rooms sold in Norwood

Prepare before the storm: Tornado safe rooms sold in Norwood

NORWOOD, Ohio (FOX19) - Now is the time to prepare for severe weather as storms become more frequent during spring and summer.

A local business sells a special kind of tornado shelter that can keep your entire family safe from a tornado.

Tornadoes can happen any time of the year here in the Tri-State, but this time of year is most common.

This week marked the 47th anniversary of the super outbreak in Xenia and the one-year anniversary of the 19 tornadoes in the Tri-State on April 8.

Storm shelters have been around for more than 100 years.

A local company selling safe rooms says new technology makes these useful for more than just tornadoes.

Lt. John Park Finley is known as the world’s very first tornado scientist.

He held a contest for the best design of a “tornado cave” as he called it. Finley estimates the most expensive version back then was $345, which would be $8,625 today.

“They’re used naturally for tornadoes,” says Midwest Saferooms salesman Russ McGurrin, “They will withstand an EF-5, 250 mph direct hit on a tornado. They were wind tested at Texas Tech University.”

The Midwest Safe Rooms are sold in Norwood by Russ McGurrin and his son Blake McGurrin.

“People that buy bigger safes from us also use one of these as a safe and a safe room,” says Blake. “So, they’re pretty popular.”

Blake says these safe rooms can protect you and your valuables from more than just a tornado. They are bulletproof too.

They sell several different sizes fitting six to 25 people inside beginning at $7,000.

They can easily be installed inside a garage or basement or on any concrete surface above ground.

“A lot of people like the above-ground shelter because as long as there is a concrete surface that we can mount it on it can be done,” explains Blake, “It’s more accessible, easier to put in places. As long as there is a concrete floor you are eligible for that FEMA rebate.”

No matter what kind of storm shelter you may use during severe storms, make that plan now before it is too late.

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