Press Releases

Birmingham City Councilor Marcus Lundy Helps Cut the Ribbon at New Community Safe Room in Smithfield Estates

Taking cover during dangerous storms and the tornado season can be a frightening process for citizens, especially for those who aren’t sure if their homes are equipped to provide protection to escape strong winds and even high-powered tornadoes. Safe rooms are often used during these instances as a room or structure specifically designed and constructed to resist wind pressures and the impact of wind-borne debris during bouts of heavy winds and tornados, which provide life-safety protection. Community Safe Rooms are typically made available for those who live in homes without a safe room and who live within the ‘Intended Occupant Zone’ as referenced in a Community Safe Room Map. In wake of the April 27, 2011 tornados that swept through many parts of Pratt City and devastated dozens of homes and families, citizens of Smithfield Estates in Pratt City were thankful for the option to stay prepared as they came out to show their support for the new community safe room at the ribbon cutting ceremony with Councilor Marcus Lundy, Mayor William Bell and other city leaders.

Councilor Lundy said knowing that there is a safe room in the community gives everyone a peace of mind and gives you comfort in knowing that they are protected. “It is truly an exciting day to have a safe room built in the Smithfield Estates Community that houses more than 1,600 individuals to keep them from hurt, harm and danger,” Councilor Lundy said. “All of us remember April 27, 2011 and today should another F5 or F7 tornado come through, our folks will have refuge. Whether you have a home or not, citizens will have some place they can come and get out of the storm.”

Since the April 27th tornado outbreak, the City of Birmingham has worked diligently with various organizations and citizens who were directly and indirectly impacted by the natural disaster to implement redevelopment plans for communities including amended urban renewal plans for Pratt City. The Birmingham City Council has worked with city leaders and community representatives to determine the greatest disaster recovery needs and how to address those needs. There are five safe rooms throughout the Pratt Community.

This article is a contribution from Chiara Perry (chiara.perry@birminghamal.gov) in the Birmingham City Council Public Information Office. For more information please contact 205.254.2294.