Shelters in High Demand after Tuesday's Twisters


Wednesday, February 11th 2009, 10:53 pm
By: News 9


By Dave Jordan, NEWS 9

OKLAHOMA CITY -- Underground is the best place to avoid the high winds and flying debris of tornados, and after Tuesday twister, the demand for storm shelters has risen.

After Tuesday's severe weather, Aaron Glenn found himself installing two shelters for customers looking for safety.

Glenn also spent much of Wednesday fielding calls from anxious homeowners and businesses, all wanting estimates on storm shelters.

"They really started coming in this morning, about 7:30, 8:00," Glenn said. "We had about 50 to 60 calls today."

Each shelter is about 170 square feet with a 6-foot-8-inch head clearance, comfortably seating between 40 to 70 people, but homeowners have been asking about the 49-square-foot model.

"Our residential customers are probably a lot more important to us because they really get the word of mouth out there," Glenn said.

Harold McFall was also inundated with inquires about his shelters.

"A lot of people want to know, 'How safe is below ground?' And I say, 'Do what Gary says. Get below ground, get below ground'," McFall said.

Most of the 80 phone calls he received want to know more about his S-10 storm shelter. McFall said it seats about eight people and fits comfortably in the ground.

Both Glenn and McFall have busy schedules in the coming weeks due to Tuesday's twister.

"It gets this way every year," Glenn said. "It's unfortunate that people are more proactive than reactive."

Both Glenn and McFall said they'll be able to meet the demand for the shelters. Depending on the make and model, it could take about two days to build or install.