Is a Tornado Proof Home Possible?
With tornadoes becoming more and more common, it makes sense to create a tornado proof home! But is that really possible? Well, yes and no. A truly tornado proof home provides protection for you and your family in a concrete safe room with a steel door. There are additional ways to make the home even safer. Read on...
One construction method has been shown to stand up to 250 mph winds, which provides you and your family with far more protection than conventional wood framing. That construction method is called ICF (insulating concrete forms).
Jeff Barber, a registered architect and University of Missouri Extension housing and environmental design specialist in Lamar, Missouri says: "In the extension offices, after a tornado hits, we'll spend days, even weeks, answering the question 'What can I do to protect my family against a tornado?' This is one of the things we suggest...Besides being safer, properly designed ICF buildings are more fire resistant, more durable and much more energy efficient." Learn more about ICF homes
The most important aspects of a tornado resistant home include the walls, roof, and windows. In a tornado, the most vulnerable areas of the home are the roof and windows. Even with the most securely fastened roofing system and impact-resistant windows, these areas may still be vulnerable depending on how the tornado hits the home (if a direct hit).
So, your safest option for a truly tornado proof home is to construct an ICF "safe room" within an ICF (or "stick-built") home in which the entire room is constructed of ICF, with no windows. Here are some additional recommendations for making the roof and windows safer in high wind situations.
Windows and Doors
Following is another video with more information about using ICF to create a tornado proof home: