Free shipping on orders over $250

You're almost there! Add $250.00 to your cart for free shipping.

Your Cart is Empty

July 24, 2020

Is a bathtub safe during a tornado? Can you really ride out and survive a tornado by sheltering in your bathtub?

Yes, and this technique has saved many people.’s also far from the best place to safeguard you during a tornado. Tornadoes are massive forces of nature, and their exact movements are hard to predict, so hiding in a bathtub without overhead protection certainly won't work all the time. But don't worry, you have plenty of other options.


The Best Places to Shelter During a Tornado

Underground shelter during a tornado

Due to its location and landscape—midway between the North Pole and the Equator, with some exceptionally uninterrupted flat land—the United States has the most tornadoes of any nation on earth.  Each year, we experience an average of 1,200 tornadoes. The majority of those tornadoes occur in the spring months, typically between the hours of 4:00pm and 9:00pm.  Because there is some regularity to tornadoes, and because we can forecast and warn for a tornado’s arrival, many of America’s children are taught from a young age about what they should do when a tornado warning is issued. The short answer — take shelter immediately!

The very best way to shelter is to gounderground.  Basements and belowground storm shelters offer optimal protection, even against the strongest tornadoes, so they should always be your #1 choice.

The second-best options are concrete or steel safe rooms on theground floor.  If properly constructed to FEMA specifications, these ground floor rooms should be as safe as an underground shelter. Plus, they make wheelchair entrance much easier.


No Basement or Shelter? Here are More Safe Places to go to During a Tornado

Survive a Tornado in a Bathtub

But what if your home has no basement or storm shelter?  Where do you go?  Before storm season even rolls around, gather your family, and walk around your home.  On the ground floor, finda room in the middle of your home, away from outside walls.  Specifically, think about it like this...if a tornado comes toward you from the west or southwest, which room in your house has the most walls between it and the approaching tornado?  Most homes have a ground floorbathroom, acloset, or ahallway that gets you away from windows and the outside walls of the house.

If the most centrally located room in your home is a ground floorbathroom, designate it as your storm shelter. And since the idea is to get as many walls between you and the approaching tornado, by all means take shelter inside thebathtub, where the fiberglass sides of the tub add another layer of protection.  Cover yourself with pillows and stay low.  If you have time to do so, put on a bicycle helmet.

Many people have survived a tornado by sheltering in their bathtub.  A lucky few have told amazing stories of riding the winds when their tub went airborne, and ended up in a field or a tree.


If All Else Fails...

Tornado Shelter in a Bathtub

If you have no basement or underground shelter, a hallway or a bathroom tub may be your best option. However, there is one other option:  if you live in a manufactured home or feel your home might not fare well in strong winds,evacuate and go to a more substantial structure.  Public storm shelters, church basements, or a neighbor’s basement could save your life—but, that's only true if you there before the twister.  Most tornado watches are issued several hours before severe weather arrives.  Use the “watch” to “GET SET”, and the “warning” to “GO.” If your home is vulnerable to high winds, use your “get set” time to walk or drive to another, safer location.

If luck is with you, youcan survive a tornado in a bathtub, but you’re better off in someplace more substantial.


Thanks for helping us build a Weather-Ready Nation!

Related Articles

Active Duty Soldier Uses Two-Way Radios On the Farm
Active Duty Soldier Uses Two-Way Radios On the Farm
An active duty soldier and farmer relies on two-way radios to ensure his farm is running smoothly and safely. Sergeant First Class Travis Linden is a full-time soldier, but owns his owns a sheep farm for when he retires. More on his story.
Continue Reading
North Iowa Jeep Club Expands its Range With GMRS Two-Way Radios
North Iowa Jeep Club Expands its Range With GMRS Two-Way Radios
Midland Radio donated GMRS two-way radios to the North Iowa Jeep Club. The group is encouraging its members to make the switch to GMRS two-way radios on the trails. That's because of the range, reliability, and more. How Midland is helping.
Continue Reading
Holiday Gift Guide- For the Home
Holiday Gift Guide- For the Home
Holiday shopping is here. It can be hard to find the perfect gift for your loved, but Midland Radio has you covered. Whether it's walkie talkies, weather radios, or gear, we have gifts you need to improve safety and communication at home.
Continue Reading