Nuclear fallout shelters have been stigmatized as the ultimate prep for the paranoid and the butt of many jokes. The Cold War seemed to create a general misconception – that a nuclear incidents are not survivable.
This doesn’t mean we should allow the continued proliferation of nuclear reactors and weapons unless we want to eventually move underground, but while we are busy demanding the end of nukes, we should also be educating ourselves about the necessary tools and techniques for surviving nuclear accidents and blasts. While this seems crazy at first it actually makes sense because the number one thing that will hurt you in a nuclear disaster (after blast effects) is inhaling or ingesting radioactive material. Below is an illustration of a shelter I whipped up using information from the available sources as guides.
The toilet (bucket-style sawdust toilet) would be located in the main entryway just outside the interior shelter door on the bunk-side of the shelter. The shelter I’ve drawn here could be expensive to build and truthfully, the whole neighborhood would know you built it due to the size of the hole. People are frightened because they no virtually nothing about how to protect themselves against a nuclear threat. I respect your years of service to the nuclear industry and imagine you must have extensive experience with the topic. The bottom line is that non-renewable energy like nuclear, oil, coal, natural gas, are killing us.
I myself do not think a lot of the people building shelters and giving good information to others so they know how to protect their loved ones is so bad, I don’t have a shelter but am happy for those who do and I do not think the main concern is nuclear power plant fallout, I think it is probably nuclear bombs most people who build the shelters are thinking of. If Japan, the United States, or Europe retreats from nuclear power in the face of the current panic, the most likely alternative energy source is fossil fuel.
My grandparents actually built a fallout shelter because it was part of the building code for the area in the 80s. The second is for the best radiation protection, the shelter should be at least 8 feet underground at the roof.
My final thought of course is to bear in mind while this would make an excellent fallout shelter, it is by no means a blast shelter. The best blast shelters are made from either fiberglass or corrugated steel, and are designed to flex some under ground shock conditions. Well no one really knows how long would one need to stay in the shelter, could be 2 to 3 weeks or months on end or maybe a year or two maybe more who knows. Through my own research over the past several years, I’ve found it extremely hard to find ANY up to date information on any *specific* shelter locations, that the public could use in a future radiological emergency. Hell, the government has published NOTHING since 1990 that gave the average citizen ANY info about fallout shelters, potential nuclear targets in the US, or any related information. In this world of growing wars, growing terror networks, and an inefficient response organization who really wants to stop terrorists, but have so far failed to do so, preparing for this eventual incident in our future falls to each and every one of us to take action and gather the materials and information where ever we can, and know what we can do to take care of our families and ourselves, should nuclear terror come our way. A nuclear blast is an explosion with intense light and heat, a damaging pressure wave, and widespread radioactive material that can contaminate the air, water, and ground surfaces for miles around.

But now that we’ve all been reminded that nuclear accidents can happen, nobody is laughing anymore. To make matters worse store shelves are currently bare as a result of the nuclear accident in Japan. This house would provide the most protection and is the recommended minimum thickness for an above ground concrete fallout shelter. To build an underground shelter like this would require some careful engineering and construction expertise – so please do not attempt to build a shelter solely from what you read here. These items, as well as the food and water, would need to be stocked and stored prior to a disaster so that the family could escape to the shelter as soon as a threat was detected. The toilet end of the entryway would be as well shielded from radiation as the main shelter but would provide a little more privacy from the main shelter. So the air entering the shelter must be filtered to prevent fallout particles from being carried inside. Low voltage fans would be needed to keep the air moving. Air would enter the shelter through the rear (smaller) entrance. In an actual emergency the likelihood of the electric grid going down is high; so this tiny shelter would need to be completely off-the-grid and powered by external solar panels or human power. My intention is to help educate and help lessen the taboo on the topic of nuclear disaster preparedness. We have a choice to close nuclear power plants, we do not have a choice to have have no more earthquakes. The nuclear disaster’s impact will most certainly be felt for years as cancer deaths and other negative effects emerge over time.
They are also worried because in many countries there are nuclear reactors that were built a few decades ago and don’t have the high standard of safety that they ought to have.
Surviving the new reality that awaits for more than an hour would be a far bigger challenge than building a shelter. My grandparents had a chemical toilet standing in the corner of their shelter, with a shower-curtain around it. Utah Shelter Systems and Radius Engineering would be great examples of blast shelter manufacturers. You need water, food, air purifire, power, books, so on, and would one go mental living in a combined space or sharing with someone else, would you start to hate each other after a time couped up with each other, and for keeping one clean having a wash, i spent one week in the bush without having a wash, i tell ya I stunk, and you need the water to do that, I am not putting shelters down in anyway I would love to have one, The cost to build one is not in everyones pockets, this is just something to think about.
If you just happen to have a fallout shelter yourself, and would consider helping her with this project, please do. A nuclear device can range from a weapon carried by an intercontinental missile launched by a hostile nation or terrorist organization, to a small portable nuclear devise transported by an individual. My hope is that nuclear preparedness becomes a topic we’re more comfortable talking about again.
Here are some examples of small buildings I’ve some across in the past that would make decent fallout shelters.

The sole fatal nuclear power accident of the last 40 years, Chernobyl, directly killed 31 people.
Include board games, books or magazines and dynamo-operated flashlights in the inventory of the shelter. You’re probably thinking more about your friends, loved ones and the rest of your community outside the shelter who are more than likely dead. I’d hate to see us succumb to fear mongering and instead educate ourselves, prepare for the possibility, and work toward eliminating nuclear power and weapons.
Both entrances would provide a space for washing-off contamination before entering the shelter.
Called improvised nuclear devices (IND), these are generally smaller, less powerful weapons than we traditionally envision.
After the initial incident those that stayed sheltered would be left to rebuild, just like those who survived the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Protection from radioactive fallout would require taking shelter in an underground area or in the middle of a large building. A more powerful bomb will produce more distant effects.Height above the ground the device was detonated.
Most electronic equipment within 1,000 miles of a high-altitude nuclear detonation could be affected. Although an EMP is unlikely to harm most people, it could harm those with pacemakers or other implanted electronic devices.Radioactive FalloutEven if individuals are not close enough to the nuclear blast to be affected by the direct impacts, they may be affected by radioactive fallout.
This is because the tremendous heat produced from a nuclear blast causes an up-draft of air that forms the familiar mushroom cloud. This fallout material decays over a long period of time, and is the main source of residual nuclear radiation.Fallout from a nuclear explosion may be carried by wind currents for hundreds of miles if the right conditions exist.
If none have been designated, make your own list of potential shelters near your home, workplace and school.
The following describes the two kinds of shelters:Blast shelters are specifically constructed to offer some protection against blast pressure, initial radiation, heat and fire. But even a blast shelter cannot withstand a direct hit from a nuclear explosion.Fallout shelters do not need to be specially constructed for protecting against fallout. If the explosion is some distance away, it could take 30 seconds or more for the blast wave to hit.Take shelter as soon as you can, even if you are many miles from ground zero where the attack occurred - radioactive fallout can be carried by the winds for hundreds of miles.
Therefore, it might be necessary for those in the areas with highest radiation levels to shelter for up to a month.The heaviest fallout would be limited to the area at or downwind from the explosion and 80 percent of the fallout would occur during the first 24 hours.

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