Wednesday, April 27, 2011

2205 Canary Drive

We closed on our new house in Ponca City on April 15th. I stayed over there to get bids from contractors on all the work that needs to be done before we move in, and to start the work that I can do myself. Basically, I camped out with a big ol' air mattress, new frig, and new washer and dryer, and the plumber. No, not really, but Ken the plumber basically spent 3 days on sight getting everything up and running, 2 of those days with Ken the husband in the house, too. We ended up with a lot of new pipes due to the record 25 below temps last winter, a new potty, and a new garbage disposal. The heating and cooling guy had to put in a new computerized, programmable thermostat and thermocoupler before the furnace would work, and believe me, I needed it last week. The temps were down to 35 several times.

Then the new tornado shelter was retrofitted in the garage. PC is in the heart of 'tornado alley' being half-way between Oklahoma City, OK, and Wichita, KS. I didn't intend to stay there very long without having a place to go since April, May and June are prime tornado season, so in it went. Three guys showed up at the house about 6:30 am one morning and drove out of the driveway at 11:30 am with the shelter complete and operable.
1. Hole cut in the garage floor

2. Flat safe shelter before installation
3. Shelter being dropped into the hole.
4. Ready for concrete surround.
5. Concrete going down!
6. Room for 6? Skinny people, maybe!
Flatsafe shelters are designed to hold just a few people, and are pre-manufactured to simply drop in a hole cut in the floor of a garage, and they are surprisingly affordable. The steel top to the shelter is spring loaded and when released by stepping on it, it easily slides open to reveal 5 steps down and two small benches on either side. It is reinforced by concrete on all sides, and meets all kinds of federal safety standards. I was concerned about whether I would be able to easily get in and out of it because the stairs are steep, but it was much, much easier than I expected. I'm hoping we never have to use it, but we are prepared if need be, to be below ground in a safe place.

Next up is the roof, then insulation, followed by installation of steel foundation peers, drywall work, and new heating and cooling units. The enclosing of the patio for a sunroom and kitchen remodel will wait for another time.

So, I'm back in Dodge City right now, and will start packing up my office and sewing room tomorrow. My sewing machine and some of my other equipment went with me the first time. I was actually silly enough to think I might have a few spare minutes to stitch on a project or two! Well, maybe next time!


  1. I am so glad & relieved that you have your storm shelter in. It was quite interesting to read about how they build them in. I bet you are also glad that you have "new knees" with the steep steps.

  2. Interesting. I'm glad & relieved to hear that you now have somewhere safe & close to go to if a tornado hits the area. I can't believe that the previous owners never took that precaution.