Missouri District Builds Storm Shelters Inside Schools

The Joplin School District has constructed community safe rooms for residents to stay in during intense storms.

JOPLIN, Mo. – The Joplin School District has constructed community safe rooms for storm season throughout the city’s schools.

The new shelters have been built according to Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) guidelines, and are designed to withstand winds of 250 mph, Joplin Globe reports.

The safe rooms are designed to accommodate students, faculty and staff of each school, as well as residents who live within a five-minute walk and a half-mile drive of the locations. Each safe room can have an average capacity of 1,000 to 1,500 people.

All safe rooms are equipped with backup generators, emergency and first-aid supplies and access to restrooms. However, they are not designed to be long-term shelters.

The shelters will be open to the public, regardless of whether school is in session; however, if a tornado watch is issued during school hours, priority inside the shelter will be given to the school’s students and staff.

School personnel and nearby residents have been trained in the operations plan and will manage the shelters during the weather event.

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