Bomb Shelter Guide

You’ve probably come to the Underground Bomb Shelter web site because of your concern for an impending – or worse – actual nuclear attack.  What with the recent testing of North Korea’s first nuclear bomb and the desire by other dictator-led countries such as Iran to get a nuclear bomb, who isn’t on edge?  More importantly, terrorist organizations such as Al Qaeda are working relentlessly to secure a nuclear weapon.

Trust Me!  You can survive a nuclear or dirty bomb attack.  It will not be the end of the world.  But, you must be prepared!
Nuclear Bomb Test - Preparing an Underground Bomb Shelter
Of course, take into consideration that those within 2 or 3 miles (or more) of ground zero will not fair very well. After a nuclear detonation and passage of the blast wave, the next greatest (or greatest) loss of life comes from radioactive fallout, which can drift for hundreds of miles down wind. After a few days, the level of radioactivity drops to near normal, non-lethal levels. There will be no nuclear holocaust!

Harvard studies, many politicians, and Homeland Security analysts have admitted that it’s not if a nuclear attack on America will happen.  Rather, it’s when a nuclear bomb will hit the country.  Some respected experts have even placed a timeline on the imminent event, saying a terrorist’s nuclear bomb could be delivered within the next few years.

What Will A Nuclear Bomb Physically Do?

Using a sample 50 kiloton bomb, surface explosion, you would need to be at least 2 miles away from ground zero to survive the blast wind. At or near 2 miles from ground zero, the speed of the blast wind would drop from about 2,000 mph to 60 mph. If you are inside a well-built structure, you could perhaps survive as close as 1 mile. But that would have to be a very strong structure as the blast wind will be at category 4 hurricane force a mile from ground zero, or about 170 mph. Don’t forget, the blast shoots out and then “sucks” back after a few seconds. The blast wind would drop to about 30 mph at a distance of 3 miles from ground zero, and down to 0 at about 4 miles away. Within half an hour fallout would start arriving up to 10 miles from detonation. At just 50 miles, you would start seeing fallout at about T+3 hours. It would take about 5 or 6 hours to reach 100 miles out. Lethal doses of radioactive fallout would be available 10 miles out for a least a week. By week two, most locations down wind would see levels fall to survivable rates. Anyone within 10 miles would be required to stay sheltered for at least a month to ensure complete protection. A terrorist would likely use a 1 or 2 kiloton bomb, such as the one detonated underground by North Korea in October, 2006. The above numbers would be smaller, yet the dangers are still there.

Nuclear Bomb Damage Map

Utilize this map and key to determine the survivability of a blast in the city or address of your choice. Source: Carlos Labs

In conjunction with the map above you can observe the level of damage inflicted on humans in the blast zone.

Nuclear bomb survivability chart key

Case Study: New York City

Here is a look at what several nuclear blasts would do to New York City. First is a blast with a bomb similar in size to the “Little Boy” bomb dropped on Hiroshima, Japan in 1945. It’s just a 15 kiloton blast…

Nuclear Bomb New York City 15 Kiloton

Are You Ready? No? Here’s How to Get Ready!

So, the question is are you ready? What would you do? Where would you go? Would it even really matter that you live within 300 miles (the danger zone) of any number of pre-determined ground zeroes; just 5 miles from ground zero you may wonder who would have time to get in an underground bomb shelter anyway? Can you survive a nuclear attack? What about fallout? Will this be the end of the world? These and many other important concerns are explored on this site.

Minimizing Exposure to Radiation

In that the actual blast from a nuclear bomb will annihilate an area up to several miles, a person living within the immediate area of the blast zone will not have to be concerned about heading promptly to an underground bomb shelter, obviously. It’s people like you and me (hopefully) that will survive the initial blast. Our greatest concern is radioactive fallout. Fallout will kill as many, if not much more than the blast itself. And how long you have before fallout arrives depends on three things:

Distance – The more distance between you and the source of the radiation, the better. This could be evacuation or remaining indoors to minimize exposure.

Shielding – The more heavy, dense material between you and the source of the radiation, the better.

Time – Most radioactivity loses its strength fairly quickly.

A typical concern of most people is protection from the explosion. Of course, knowing where the detonation is going to occur may be revealed when the government realizes the country is being attacked via missile. Average ICBM travel time from North Korea to the west coast of the United States, for example is about 30 minutes. Even though the missile is tracked as soon as it leaves the launch pad, it’s likely that NORAD will be so busy tracking the missile and taking actions to blow it out of the atmosphere that common folk like you and I won’t receive sufficient warning, if any. This is especially true if the recently cancelled civil defense nuclear warning and shelter maintenance plan once common to every town, school, and local government isn’t reinstated and understood by the public.

On the other hand, a terrorist-delivered nuclear weapon (or chemical/biological weapon) will obviously provide no warning. Your best defense is distance. If you are several miles or more away from ground zero, at best you can react to the bright flash of light. If you are immediately keen on what’s going on, you may have several minutes to reach the safety of your shelter before the blast wave arrives. This scenario would apply primarily not to people who are at ground zero (they will be long gone, of course), but to those who are between about 3 and 10 or more miles away. And they would have mere seconds to react – about 3 to 15 seconds respectively.

Radioactive Fallout Will be The Killer

Like the more than 160 million Americans who live within the danger zones, your greatest concern following a nuclear attack comes from radioactive fallout. That’s the main reason you will need a well-constructed, underground bomb shelter. It’s true that taking shelter under the coffee table or in the basement will increase your chances for short-term survival, but these structures will not keep you alive. Only an underground bomb shelter will guarantee your survival. Once you understand the penetrating abilities of radiation via fallout, you will be far more motivated to build a shelter underground. The concept is fairly simple – separate yourself from fallout with at least 36 inches of dirt (or varying amounts of other materials such as concrete, lead, etc.)

While the initial blast could kill a million people, tens of thousands more will die from radioactive dust which will drift for several hundred miles downrange from the point of detonation. The track it follows, just as in a volcano eruption and even the weather, is one relevant to the jet stream, a prevailing pattern of winds and weather coming from the west or north west. In other words, the fallout will most likely travel from west to east.

Fallout will begin appearing within 5 minutes (or less) after the initial blast. Depending on the size of the bomb, type of detonation (underground, ground level, or air burst) and height of the mushroom cloud which, as mentioned earlier, is filled with radioactive debris, gamma-charged dust particles can travel across several states before falling to the ground. As time goes by, the radioactive energy literally burns itself out as the powdery surface left will return to near normal levels. This can take as long as several weeks, but typically should not last more than 4 or 5 days. The immediate blast area will be uninhabitable for thousands of years. A lot of factors will play in determining the level or radiation at different intervals of time and distance from the blast. Included are weather, temperature, wind speed, and size of the weapon. You best defense against fallout? A carefully planned, well-constructed, and fully stocked underground bomb shelter.

What are America’s Likely Nuclear Bomb Targets?

There are several hundred “Cold War” targets peppering the United States. Your state can have as few as 4 or 5, or as many as 50. Much of these presumed targets employ locations determined by the former Soviet Union during the Cold War.

Today, if we want to know where a terrorist attack will happen, then we need to think like a terrorist. Terrorists want to kill as many people as possible. So an obvious choice as a target for a nuclear attack would be any large city. Of course, the eastern and western seaboards of the United States offer plenty from which to choose.

A western attack would make more sense as the possibilities for additional casualties courtesy the fallout can be icing on the cake for a terrorist organization. Terrorist, as shown in the 9/11 attacks, also place high regard on symbols of freedom, or America in general. So, a nuclear weapon delivered via boat straight up the Mississippi to a heartland city such as St. Louis would satisfy several goals.

The dilemma for America is that we just don’t know when nor where the terrorist’s nuclear attack will take place. We can factor all possible locations and chart the expected downwind predictions for fallout. But, that’s about it. Therefore, everyone needs a plan of action in place before the attack.

Get an Underground Bomb Shelter, Hop In, and Now What?

You’ve heard of bomb shelters but don’t have a clue as to how or where to buy one, or at best build a bomb shelter. There are several businesses and organizations in America which specialize in underground bomb shelter fabrication. And, you can have a shelter installed for as little as $20,000 all the way up to hundreds of thousands of dollars. Some underground bomb shelter businesses have outstanding products while others are still clearly in the development stage. Many similar businesses offer various products such as geiger counters, radiation alarms, underground bomb shelter filtration devices, etc. to compliment the wise shelter owners. And there are countless others offering survival meal packages, books about nuclear blasts, specialized emergency preparedness kits, and even plans for building underground bomb shelters.

The important thing to consider is you are going to need far more than just a container in the ground if you expect to survive. How are you going to know if you have everything in place for complete protection from an NBC attack? Certainly, waiting until an attack has occurred would not be the ideal time to realize you are short that blast valve, filtration kit, or even toilet paper! You are going to need a complete underground bomb shelter plan, and you want to make sure such a plan has been scrutinized thoroughly.

That’s where comes in. We take away all the confusion by providing you a one-stop source on planning for everything you need to survive. We tell you how to build an underground bomb shelter, where to get materials, where to place the shelter, what to stock in it. Heck, we even provide a number of underground bomb shelter plans, for use in various applications. All you have to do is follow the instructions on your plan of choice. If you can build a birdhouse, you can build one of our underground bomb shelters! But, that’s not all. There are many more elements of a solid bomb shelter plan. Leave out just one of these and you’re likely to become a statistic of the unfortunate attack – even if you live hundreds of miles down wind.

Here are just a few of the hundreds of very important issues that must be addressed when considering complete protection from a nuclear blast or other weapon of mass destruction attack:

  • Most importantly, who’s providing you NBC, underground bomb shelter, or weapons of mass destruction advice, information, and/or products? In other words, what level of expertise does the business have?
  • What types of underground bomb shelters are available?
  • Can I build my own underground bomb shelter, and if so, what materials will I need?
  • What will protect me and/or my family from the blast?
  • What will protect me and/or my family from radioactive fallout?
  • What will protect me and/or my family from a biological (gas) attack?
  • How long will we need to remain in our underground bomb shelter following an attack?
  • Will a typical emergency preparedness kit be sufficient?
  • Will the shelter provide protection from radiological, biological or chemical agents?
  • Do we need gas masks?
  • What amount of food, water, and other basic needs should be stored in our shelter?
  • What is the best food to get?
  • What do we do when nature calls?
  • Will I be able to purchase military-grade supplies (MRE’s, atropine injectors, NBC suits, etc.)?
  • How will we know when it’s safe to come out of the underground bomb shelter?
  • What technical nuclear information should I have on hand inside my shelter?
  • Can my shelter double as a wine cellar or storage pantry?
  • What are the time requirements for getting my loved ones inside the shelter?
  • I can’t afford a professionally installed shelter. What should I do?
  • Will this be the end of the world? And if so, why should I be concerned about living?
  • What will $1,000, $5,000 or even $20,000 buy me?
  • How is electrical power provided in an underground bomb shelter?
  • How can I communicate with the outside world following an attack?

Here’s some food for thought. Would you fight a fire with buckets or fire hoses? In a tornado, would you prefer to be in the bath tub of a mobile home or an underground cellar complete with emergency kit? If you are bitten by a diamond-back rattlesnake while miles from nowhere, would you have someone slice and suck the wound, or use a snake survival kit? My point here is you should never bring a knife to a gun fight. Buying or building an underground bomb shelter is smart. But not knowing how to survive in one is a death sentence. You are going to need very thorough information. You are going to need a top-notch plan.

Undergound Bomb Shelter Planning

Bomb Shelter Location

The location you choose for your bomb shelter should be one which gives you the greatest protection possible. Just placing an underground bomb shelter in your back yard is not enough. You need to find the most optimal location. In doing so, you need to consider the terrain, water levels, and distance from other structures. This includes location of sewer and electrical lines.

Essentially, you want to have as much mass between your bomb shelter and the attack. After identifying potential nuclear bomb targets and where a likely blast wind will come from, determine a bomb shelter position that will serve the greatest protection. The lower edge of a hill, for example would be an excellent place for your bomb shelter if a prospected blast happens in the distance on the other side of the hill. The idea is use common sense in determining where an attack might occur. Then, build your bomb shelter in the best possible location.

In considering the fallout aspect, just know that its going to fall everywhere; no hill or mountain would reduce the amount of fallout since it falls straight to the ground like snow. So, you just need to make sure you put your underground bomb shelter deep enough – 36 inches or more below the surface.

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