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West Side Real Estate News & Notes

4/10/2014 - West Side Leader
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By Staff Writer

Ohio Safe Room Rebate offered by Ohio EMA

COLUMBUS — The Mitigation and Recovery Branch of the Ohio Emergency Management Agency (EMA) has introduced the Ohio Safe Room Rebate Program, which provides a rebate for the purchase and installation of safe rooms for Ohio homeowners.

State officials anticipate the program will aid in the construction of approximately 39 safe rooms. An additional nine homeowners are eligible from last year’s rebate program.

A safe room is an extreme-wind shelter or space that provides protection to people during a tornado or high wind event. A safe room can be built in one of several places in the home: in the basement, beneath a concrete foundation or garage floor, or in an interior room on the first floor. A safe room also can be buried in the yard near the home or installed above ground outside the home.

“Not only is Ohio at risk of EF5 tornadoes, since as far back as 1968, the state has actually had nine,” said Steve Ferryman, Ohio EMA mitigation branch chief. “EF5 tornadoes produce winds exceeding 200 mph and are capable of destroying most structures. A safe room is built to withstand these winds and airborne debris. A safe room provides near-absolute protection for its occupants.”

Residents selected for the program are eligible for a rebate up to 75 percent of the cost to install or construct a safe room — up to a maximum of $5,250. To apply for the Ohio Safe Room Rebate Program, homeowners have until 5 p.m. April 18 to register on the Ohio EMA website at ohiosharpp.ema.state.oh.us/saferoom2014.

The Ohio Safe Room Program will use a computerized random selection process to select names. Chosen homeowners will be notified by email on or after April 22.

Funding for the rebate program is provided by the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s (FEMA) Pre-Disaster Mitigation grant program. Safe rooms constructed and/or installed under the program must meet FEMA requirements. Safe rooms cannot be constructed and/or installed prior to the rebate drawing.

For details on safe rooms, visit www.fema.gov/plan/prevent/saferoom/residential.shtm.


Stephanie Kist contributed to this report.

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