Shelter in Place

Shelter in place refers to safety protocols designed to protect individuals during emergencies by staying indoors and securing their current location. This practice is often advised during natural disasters, hazardous material spills, active shooter scenarios, or other public safety threats. Effective shelter-in-place measures include sealing windows and doors, turning off HVAC systems to prevent the intake of external air, and having access to emergency supplies.


  • Enhances Safety: Provides immediate protection during various emergencies by minimizing exposure to hazards.
  • Quick Response: Enables individuals to take immediate action in situations where evacuation isn’t possible or safe.
  • Self-Sufficiency: Encourages preparedness and the ability to remain self-sufficient for extended periods if necessary.
  • Community Protection: Reduces the movement of people during an emergency, aiding in the overall management of the situation.


  • Websites: offers comprehensive guides on how to effectively shelter in place during different types of emergencies.
  • Apps: Emergency alert apps like FEMA provide real-time notifications and advice on when and how to shelter in place.
  • Books: “The Disaster Survival Handbook” by Sam Fury includes strategies for sheltering in place among other survival techniques.

Best Age to Start

Basic concepts of sheltering in place can be introduced to children as young as 4-5 years old, with more detailed instructions and responsibilities given as they mature. Adults should ensure they understand and can implement shelter-in-place procedures at any age, especially if responsible for the care of others.

Equipment and Materials Needed

  • Emergency Kit: Includes water, non-perishable food, first aid supplies, flashlights, and batteries. Costs can vary, with basic kits starting around $30-$50.
  • Communication Devices: A battery-powered or hand-crank radio ($20-$60) to stay informed.
  • Sealing Materials: Duct tape and plastic sheeting to seal windows and doors, approximately $10-$20.

Starting Tips

  • Identify Safe Rooms: Choose an interior room with few windows as the designated shelter area.
  • Prepare an Emergency Kit: Assemble or purchase an emergency kit tailored to the needs of your household.
  • Stay Informed: Use apps and sign up for local emergency alerts to receive timely information.
  • Practice Drills: Regularly practice shelter-in-place drills with all household members.

Recommended Frequency

Review and practice shelter-in-place plans at least once a year, updating your emergency kit and plan as needed based on changes in household composition or new information on local threats.

Requirements/Tasks to Master Shelter in Place

  • Comprehensive Planning: Develop a detailed shelter-in-place plan that addresses different types of emergencies.
  • Emergency Kit Maintenance: Regularly check and replenish supplies in your emergency kit.
  • Effective Communication: Establish a communication plan with family members and emergency contacts.
  • Knowledge Upkeep: Stay informed about potential threats in your area and updates to local emergency procedures.

Famous People Known for Shelter-in-Place Advocacy

While there may not be celebrities famous specifically for shelter-in-place advocacy, many public figures and officials become key spokespersons for preparedness during emergencies, urging the public to follow safety protocols.

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