Padgett says she got the storm shelter to be prepared for any other storms that may pass over her home, where she lives alone and has no basement or anywhere to go in the event of a storm.
I got the shelter because of all the tornadoes that’s going around, because I don’t have a basement and because I live alone, so I thought underground is the safest place you can be,” said Padgett.
The 16-person storm shelter is buried just outside her back door and is watertight and built out of solid steel, equipped with a storm radio, lights, air vents for circulation, a three ton jack to pry open the shelter door if something falls on it, carpet, and even cable television that works as long as the power is on.
After being a nurse for 25 years, and retiring last year, Padgett says she has elderly neighbors she hopes will join her in the event of a storm.
“Once you get down here you don’t feel like you’re boxed in or closed in, they have one half this size, but I said no I need the space, so I’m telling all my neighbors to come over,” said Padgett. “I don’t want to have to be down there by myself.”
Also in Gordon County, an above ground storm shelter has recently been installed at the Gordon County Emergency Management Agencie’s office, according to Director of the Gordon County Emergency Management Agency (EMA), Richard Cooper
Padgett is an example of preparedness that Cooper hopes all Gordon County residents are mindful of especially during the month of September, which is National Preparedness month.
Preparation education in September
In conjunction with the Georgia Emergency Managaement Agency, and its campaign “Ready Georgia,” Gordon County EMA is working to educate its residents about being prepared.
“A recent survey of our state’s residents revealed that many have not stocked up on critical emergency supplies or performed crucial activities that would prepare them for a large-scale disaster,” said Cooper “National Preparedness Month serves as a good reminder that we all have a responsibility in protecting ourselves, our families and our communities. By acting on Ready Georgia’s simple message of ‘prepare, plan and stay informed,’ Georgians have the power to become their own first responders during emergency situations.”
Storm shelters are the just the first step and one option for residents and families to practice preparedness at all times.
Throughout the month, Ready Georgia and Gordon County EMA will join a nationwide coalition of thousands of private, public and nonprofit organizations, each hosting local events and initiatives designed to motivate people to take the necessary steps to ensure that their homes, workplaces and communities are prepared for disasters and emergencies of all kinds.
By creating a “Ready” profile, Georgians can also receive a tailored plan for the entire family that includes the specific amount of supplies to put in their household ready kits.
In addition, Ready Georgia has created a mobile app for preparedness information on the go.
For more information about National Preparedness Month activities occurring locally, call Gordon County Emergency Management Agency at 706-602-2905.
About Ready Georgia
Ready Georgia is a statewide campaign designed to educate and empower Georgians to prepare for and respond to natural disasters, pandemic outbreaks, potential terrorist attacks and other large-scale emergencies.
The campaign is a project of the Georgia Emergency Management Agency (GEMA) and provides a local dimension to Ready America, a broader national campaign. Ready Georgia aims to prepare citizens for maintaining self-sufficiency for at least 72 hours following an emergency, and uses an interactive web site, online community toolkit, broadcast and print advertising and public awareness media messaging to reach its audiences.
For more information visit ready.ga.gov, find Ready Georgia on Facebook at facebook.com/ReadyGA or on YouTube at youtube.com/ReadyGAfromGEMA.
For more information on how to prepare, plan and stay informed of natural and manmade disasters or pandemic outbreaks, individuals and families can call 706-602-2905 or visit ready.ga.gov.