Shawnee Tornado Shelters

Dated: February 20 2023

Views: 58

UPDATED March 30, 2022 In 2014, Shawnee closed two of its public storm shelters in City Hall and Fire Station #3 on MacArthur. This brings us to wonder sometimes what to do if we're caught in a severe storm with tornadoes. Tornadoes can pop up quickly, so we need to have a plan before we're under a tornado warning. As of May 20, 2019, the City of Shawnee has closed all public access to previously open storm shelters. Recently, I've heard people say that Immanuel Baptist Church (see comment below) will open for residents to take shelter on their lower level. Also there's talk that Grove School may offer shelter after school hours. Please independently verify these sites prior to the next storm threat. In the past, the Shawnee Emergency Management director has stressed that you are discouraged from waiting until the last minute to get in your car and drive to a shelter in the event of tornado conditions. The worst possible place to be during a tornado threat is in a vehicle or outside. 

Sign up for weather, disaster, and other alerts through the Citizens Alerts Program

One of the reasons given for eliminating the public shelters was the significant increase in registered private shelters in Shawnee since the 2013 tornadoes. If you have a storm shelter or safe room at your home, make sure to register your shelter with the City of Shawnee! Have a plan for taking shelter! Here's what to do during a tornado. My friend and colleague Wendy Foreman from Norman, OK shared this great to-do list in the event of a significant tornado threat:

  • Pack a bag of clothes for a few days
  • Make sure you wear gym shoes with socks in case you end up having to walk out of a disaster zone
  • Photograph and/or take video of your home and belongings, and if possible, upload the video to the cloud (or private YouTube, etc.)
  • Gather important papers and have them with you: insurance information, passports, birth certificates social security cards and car titles
  • Charge all phones, laptops and extra battery packs

Stay safe, neighbors!

Blog author image

Steve Reese

My wife, Sharon, and I live in Shawnee, where I’ve been in the real estate industry since 1994. We’re firmly planted in our little community, where Sharon teaches special education English at Shaw....

Latest Blog Posts

What More Listings Mean When You Sell Your House

The number of homes for sale is playing a big role in today’s housing market. And, if you’re considering whether or not to list your house, today’s limited supply is one of

Read More

Foreclosure numbers are nothing like the 2008 crash

If you’ve been keeping up with the news lately, you’ve probably come across some articles saying the number of foreclosures in today’s housing market is going up. And

Read More

Protesting your property taxes: know your rights and take action!

Did you recently get a notice that your property taxes are increasing? As an experienced REALTOR® in Shawnee, Oklahoma, I can be your valuable resource in lowering your property tax bill. Modest

Read More

Ways to use your tax refund if you want to buy a home

Have you been saving up to buy a home this year? If so, you know there are some expenses involved—from your down payment to closing costs. But did you also know your tax refund can help

Read More