Storm shelter sales rise as tornado season approaches

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This week's statewide tornado drills have more Hoosiers thinking of storm safety for their family.

Some storm shelter companies say they're seeing increased interest in their products.

The siren tests remind us to be storm ready with a plan. The tornado warning exercises this week remind Linda Hennarichs of Pittsboro of the devastating and deadly twister that hit Henryville last March.

"Brought tears to my eyes," she said.

Linda's family showed us their home emergency plan.

"In the bathroom," she says, "We have no windows, it's all brick. I keep a weather radio and flashlight and blanket. Grab the blanket, pull the supplies and we go into the bathtub."

Linda's also weather-aware after a brush with a twister in Oklahoma.

"The tornadoes were literally bouncing. The news anchors were screaming there's another one," she said.

Two years ago, Linda and her husband were at the Sugarland concert at the Indiana State Fair. Fair officials didn't order evacuations, but given her experience with severe storms, they took one look at the clouds and wind picking up and got out of the grandstands on their own headed for solid structures.

"You heard the stage crashing, people screaming and he grabbed me by the hand and just said, 'Run for your life'," Linda said.

Linda's ready, but would feel better if she had a basement.

"We've been getting calls from all over the place," says Matt Wharff of Superior Storm Shelters and Saferooms in Pittsboro.

He fielded six calls in a few hours alone Wednesday afternoon. He says the anniversary of Henryville and the Storm Awareness Week seem to be rebuilding interest in storm shelters.

The in-ground fiberglass models he sells begin at $3,500 up to $8,500. The entire structure is put into the ground and only the entrance hatch is barely above the soil.

However you shelter, it's best to just have a plan to shelter.