Ft. Madison Schools building storm shelter - WGEM.com: Quincy News, Weather, Sports, and Radio

Ft. Madison Schools building storm shelter

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FORT MADISON, Ia. (WGEM) -

Emergency officials across the Midwest are urging schools to build storm shelters for protection following the deadly tornado in Oklahoma that killed eight students.

In Fort Madison, that's already happening.

Construction crews are almost finished with a 7,000-sq. foot storm shelter that sits at the middle school campus. The building can hold more than 900 people and can withstand 250 mile per hour winds, the strength of an EF 5 tornado.

Ft. Madison Schools Director of Operations Kevin Moon say it will ensure the safety of the students under the most extreme situations.

"The kids are trained in normal schools to go to the hallway and put their books over their heads and crouch low. Well, that did not work in Oklahoma," Moon said. "You get them into a safe room structure and they call it near absolute protection of life."

The facility will be ready in June and will be used as a gym for extracurricular activities throughout the school year.

The shelter was paid for through FEMA and state funds.

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