Craighead OES Officials Close Out Severe Weather Awareness Week by Promoting Safe Rooms

FEBRUARY 18, 2005 - Posted at 11:23 a.m. CST

JONESBORO, AR - Since 1999, the Arkansas Department of Emergency Management (ADEM) has administered the state's Safe Room/In-Ground Shelter program, and officials with the Craighead County Office of Emergency Management today closed out Severe Weather Awareness Week by lauding the importance of safe rooms and storm shelters.

OES Director Jack Richardson told K8 News one of the advantages of safe rooms in residential dwellings is their ability to blend in with the home's normal decor and architectural style.  "People build them in their homes as closets.  You can build them as restrooms, bathrooms...just any room and the room can be finished, and it looks just like a regular room, except for the door with the three locks on it," said Richardson.

ADEM's program offers a fifty percent reimbursement up to $1,000 to homeowners for the construction of safe rooms or in-ground storm shelters.  To obtain plans and specifications for a safe room, you may call FEMA toll-free at 888-565-3896, and request FEMA publication 320.  Information may also be obtained locally from the Craighead County OES office at 933-4575.