Bathtubs Provide Shelter During Tornadoes

By By Vickie Frantz, Staff Writer
June 15, 2011, 1:29:10 AM EDT

"With the roof gone, the man felt the tornado pulling..."

Tornado victims credit their bathtubs with saving their lives.

On May 25, CNN reported a Joplin, Mo., police officer rode out the tornado in his bathtub. With the roof gone, the man felt the tornado pulling him from the tub and grabbed the faucet. The man was unharmed.

A Joplin woman and her son also sought shelter in their bathtub, according to After the tornado, they were covered with debris. She was able to reach her cellphone in her back pocket and text people for help.

Friends and relatives who arrived on the scene saw light from her blinking cell phone and were able to remove the debris and dig her and her son out. reported that Kansas City Chiefs defensive back Javier Arenas sought shelter in his tub during a tornado in Tuscaloosa, Ala., on April 27. There was noise, but his home was not damaged.

Seeking shelter in a bathtub can help save your life during a tornado. The bathroom has strong framing and the pipes in the walls could help hold them together, according to The bathtub and commode are directly anchored to the ground. They are often the only things left intact after a tornado passes.

When in a bathtub, cover yourself with a couch cushion. This will help protect you from debris.

While a bathroom can provide protection during a tornado, the basement is still the best place to go if you have one.

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