Recent inclement weather prompts more Omaha homeowners to purchase storm shelters

OMAHA, Neb. (WOWT) – There’s no doubt about it: bad weather season is upon us.

Omaha continues to be hit by storm after storm. Along with these extreme weather conditions comes a renewed interest in security shelters.

It’s hard to forget last December 16 when a storm with winds blowing in excess of 90 miles per hour produced six tornadoes, causing widespread damage throughout the Omaha metro area and beyond.

Ruth Sterett lives in Dundee.

“This time has been crazy,” she said.

Ruth has lived in Omaha for decades and said she has never seen anything like it.

“Time has changed, that’s for sure,” she said. “The winds scare me, you know because I don’t know what’s going to break. I have another bedroom at the back. You don’t know if a massive tree will fall on it. Fences explode.

Bob Quartoroli of Dreamscape Homes agrees. He said builders are generally behind schedule this year due to extreme winds.

“The winds certainly caused us a lot of problems,” he said.

It also sparked new trends in home design. Quartoroli said more customers are asking for storm shelters, especially in areas where basements aren’t allowed due to high water levels underground.

“We are digging deeper under the front steps. They will potentially turn it into a gun storehouse, safe deposit box and storm shelter,” Quartoroli said.

Builders say another trend they are seeing is homeowners having storm shelters built into the structure of the home itself.

“So this whole structure is a storm shelter and you can see the thickness of the walls, whereas the rest of the interior walls are 4 inches – it’s 8 and up,” Quartoroli said. “Everything is concrete. Even if there is space above, we also reinforce the lid. This will have an exterior door here instead of a traditional interior door. It is therefore your safe in the event of a storm. Everything is concrete. »

A storm shelter can cost you several thousand dollars, but your peace of mind might be worth it.

Builders say that while storm shelters can be expensive, they’re still cheaper than basements.

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