Storm shelters provide security during severe weather

While many people are still cleaning up after the weekend storms some are working on future plans to stay safe for when the next storm system blows through.   One Autauga County family was ready when the rough weather hit.  They rode it out in their own storm shelter.

Patti Gober had her underground storm shelter installed just a couple of months ago.  It came in handy Friday night - the first time she used it.

"We got in case it's going to be bad weather and Rich keep saying, it's going to be bad weather, so we took the two dogs and we went in there," Gober said.

Gober said she, her daughter and her two dogs spent a few hours in the shelter as the storms passed by.

"You can hear the wind and you can hear the rain," Gober said.  "It's not as loud as if you were in the house,"it's really not frightening at all."

Gober doesn't live far from where three people were killed during a tornado that night.

"I'm really so sorry for them.  I'm afraid they really didn't have a safe place to go, which is the way I felt about this place for a long time ever since I moved here."

The shelter cost around $6 thousand, but Gober received a $4,000 grant through the Autauga County EMA.  The manufacturer ShelterPlus installed it, once the grant was approved.

"If you don't have a safe room in your house, or you live the way I do out in the country and there's no ditch to get in or anything like that, I would absolutely recommend this type of thing." Gober said.

If you're interested in applying for the grant, you can contact the Autauga County EMA.  Many other counties have a similar program.  Officials say there is a long process before approval.  It took almost two years for Gober's shelter to be installed.

ShelterPlus said they've received a lot of calls about their shelters since Friday.  That usually happens after a major severe weather event.

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