How to Survive a Tornado with No Shelter, Bunker or Basement

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The most typical and most useful tornado safety advice is to hide inside a shelter, bunker, or in the basement. But what if you don’t have these kinds of protection? No basement in your house, no bunker around, or whatsoever.

So here are the guide and actions you can take to survive the storm with no shelter.

Seek the nearest shelter as quickly as possible

Pay attention to the radio podcast, and you will notice when the tornado is coming before it is too late; by then, you probably have time to move somewhere safe.

Seek somewhere where got a shelter or bunker that can protect you from the tornado.

Your neighbor’s house might be got a basement to hide, but if possible, contact them and let them know you are coming.

Usually, where a place often has twister disaster, there got some official community buildings or halls that attach a storm shelter. So you need to get familiar with the surrounding community in your area.


Hide in the most interior and lowest place in your house

You may not have enough time to get a warning to leave your house to find the safest place to hide; then, the house is your best chance.

Go to the lowest floor, find a windowless room with no exterior wall, stay away from windows and exterior doors, or go to the center of your house.

If you live in an apartment, find your apartment manager or someone in charge of the apartment safety for tornado warning protocols.

Stay alert for warnings.

Find protection to cover your head.

The rest of your body is also important, but your head is the most crucial part to protect.

Find something to cover, like a motorcycle helmet, contractor helmet, something substantial.

steel bowl also does the job if you don’t have any helmet, cover it on your head.

The mattress is a soft protective cover that you can place on top of your bed, cushion, or couch to protect it from flying objects.


Hide in bathtubs, but there a catch

You may hear the advice of hiding in the bathtub when a tornado comes, but not all tubs are suitable.

bathtubs used to be made out of cast iron, but these days they are too flimsy to be protected from the storm.

If you think your tubs are good, then hiding in the bathroom is a good choice.


Get the emergency kit.

Don’t forget to get your emergency kit with you, and you should prepare earliest before any disaster happen.

The essential things for a survival kit, especially for a twister event would be:


Rain gear

The environment could be very wet, prepare a few rain gears to stay dry for your body.



A big disaster will affect the electricity supply, when blackout, you can use a flashlight, lighter, or candle to light up the environment.



Bring extra batteries to power up equipment like flashlight and radio.


Air horn

Or whistler, to notice other people when you stuck in a place and need help.


First Aid Kit

Heal yourself and the people you care about. Please read my other guide for more detail.


REM(Ready to Eat Meal)

In case the disaster will not end very soon, prepare something to eat


Can opener

To open the canned food



At least 3 gallons of water per person



For communicating with your family or others.


Emergency Blanket

The regular blanket will do, but the standard emergency blanket brings more protection, it can adequately cover your body heat.


For in a mobile home or the car, evacuate immediately.

Tornadoes are deadly, but the hail they produce can be devastating. Therefore, a vehicle that is struck by a tornado should be evacuated immediately.

The mobile home is not a safe place to hide from the tornado, and you need to evacuate if possible, the same goes for in the car.

Find a culvert or ditch and hide inside, don’t forget to cover your head.

Because sometimes the tornado could be strong enough to blow your car away.


In conclusion, you are not doomed (yet) if you cannot find any tornado shelter when encountering a tornado, the guides above can minimize your risk of getting injured or killed.

For more:

SHTF Planning: Prepping For Any Disaster


NOAA Weather Radio

Survive After End

Survive After End

write anything related to surviving a catastrophe. Whether it's disaster preparation or how to prevent an apocalypse in the first place.

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