Adamsville shelter geared for more than tornadoes


ADAMSVILLE, Ala. (WIAT) — Alabama weather can turn on a dime. The Community Safe Room behind the Adamsville Senior Center at Spring Street Park doubles as a warming center or tornado shelter depending on what the community needs.

On a sunny day with temperatures in the mid 60s and a slight breeze are you thinking about severe weather?

“Well I, I don’t, I keep track of the news and see if I can try to find out if anything is coming, you know, but other than that not. I don’t worry about it too much,”  Darrell Dobel, Adamsville resident.

There are all sorts of weather events that can force people into desperate situations.

It could be miles of icy gridlock in every direction, or the eerie sound of storm sirens and the threat of a tornado.

At the Community Safe Room in Adamsville city planners are trying to prepare for them all, according to Mayor Pam Palmer.

Situated behind the Adamsville Senior Center at 419 Spring Street, Palmer says the building is likely the closest shelter to drivers on Highway 78 or Corridor X in west Jefferson County.

“We’re actually less than a mile off the highway if you take the right road,” said Palmer. “During the freeze this past year we had a gentleman in shorts stranded on I-22, barefooted. He was just planning to run somewhere and he got trapped.”

With cots, blankets and enough room for just about 300 people, they’re trying to cover their bases.

Adamsville Fire Captain Andy Butler wants everyone else to be thinking the same way.

“Have a severe weather kit in place flashlight, batteries, your severe weather radio, knowing where you’re going to go. Make sure your cell phone’s charged. And just kind of a list of things that you may need if your power’s out for days or you can’t actually get to where your residence is due to damage,” said Butler.

Mayor Palmer told WIAT 42 that she’s waiting for clearance from the Alabama Department of Transportation to put up road signs that would direct drivers on Highway 78 to the storm shelter in the event of an emergency.

Adamsville resident Darrell Dobel says it’s good to know that the shelter is there in case his family needs it.

“Well yes, you know because you’re pretty vulnerbale when you’re in your own house with big trees around,” said Dobel.

Copyright 2015 WIAT 42 News

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