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8 Things to Keep in Your Storm Shelter

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I live in Kansas, right in tornado alley. I can remember countless tornado warnings and hiding under couches and in the bathtub as a kid, and in our basement as an adult with my own children.

If you live in tornado alley as well, you know that by getting yourself and your family to the innermost room or hallway in your home (as far away from windows as possible), in your basement or storm shelter if you live in an apartment or mobile home is safest. But what should you take with you to your shelter?

8 Things to Keep in Your Tornado or Storm Shelter

8 Things to Keep in Your Storm Shelter

1. Have EVERYONE put on their tennis shoes

If the worst happens, you don’t want to be barefoot or in your socks, climbing over the rubble after a tornado.

2. Wear Bicycle Helmets 

If you have bicycle helmets – WEAR THEM! Especially your children if you do not own one yourself.

3. Take Bottled Water and Crackers 

If you DO get stranded in your safe room or basement, you’ll need plenty of water to get you through. The human body can survive much longer without food, but you need to have water handy.

4. Put a Leash on Your Pet 

Take your pets WITH you to your shelter, and put them on a leash. In the very least, take the leash (or have an extra) in your safe room.

5. Radio or Weather Radio 

Buy a weather radio. It is worth it if you live in Kansas or anywhere within tornado alley. If your power goes out, you need to be able to hear what is happening in the outside world, while tucked away in your shelter.

6. Have a First Aid Kit 

Just in case, you’ll want to have a first-aid kit handy.

7. Flashlight

Take a flashlight! Even if there is NO tornado near you, your power may go out. Have a flash light handy.

8. Phone Charger

Charge your phone prior to a tornado watch, you’ll know its coming. If possible, take a phone charger with you to your safe room. If you’ll be in the safe room for any length of time, it will come in handy.

8 Things to Keep in Your Tornado or Storm Shelter

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  1. We keep folded lawn chairs in our 4x8 shelter. Dec 26, 2015 (yes one day after Christmas) an F-3 hit our home and many surrounds homes. Luckily we had left early that morning to visit family never even thinking tornado. Returned back to the Dallas area where we live from Memphis after finding out and our home ended up having to be torn down, even the foundation. Yes it can happen! We will never be without a storm shelter again. It barely had a scratch and was smack dab in the middle of the path of the tornado literally cutting through our home.
  2. You forgot to add "take all medications" if the worst happens they can be very hard to replace. And even if it doesn't, many medications have to be taken at the same time everyday and we all know that in Kansas you can spend a lot of time in shelters on really bad weather days.
  3. Great ideas. A couple of years ago someone suggested to me that a whistle should be added to the kit, for signaling your location. I had not thought of that before, but it makes perfect sense!