With all the current storm activity that came close to threatening Park Cities and Preston Hollow, it might be time to consider making a safe room in your own home.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) claims that such a "safe room" can give you "near absolute protection" from tornadoes and hurricanes.  This is taken from FEMA P-320: Taking Shelter from the Storm, Building a Safe Room For Your Home or Small Business. The article includes detailed geographical info, a risk assessment, and safe room designs.

"Near absolute protection means that, based on our current knowledge of tornadoes and hurricanes, the occupants of a safe room built according to this publication will have a high probability of being protected from injury or death."

Experts tell us that we usually only have 13 minutes warning of tornado.  Your best odds of survival are if you are at home and if you have a safe place to ride out the storm. There are several factors in constructing a safe room.  FEMA recommends a minimum of 7 X 10 feet, located in the home, outside of the home, or underground.  The basic cost to design and construct a safe room ranges from $8,000-$9,500 for an 8 X 8 foot space and $14,000-$17,000 for a 14 X 14 foot space.  A safe room can be even be retrofitted in an existing space in the home, such as an interior closet or pantry.

Even well constructed homes cannot withstand winds of more than 250 miles per hour. The safest place you can be is in a room constructed of reinforced concrete with no windows and a concrete floor or roof system.  The money spent on this item seems well worth it, if it should save your life and those of your loved ones.

Several companies in the DFW area specialize in construction of safe rooms. For additional information, contact Hanne Sagalowsky at the number below.

Hanne Sagalowsky / / 214-402-8200 / International Property Specialist

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