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Booming Business For Bomb Shelters

CBS News Bomb Shelter articleOriginally published at CBS News, December 8, 2001

Fearing nuclear terrorism, Americans are building home fallout shelters in numbers unseen since the peak of the Cold War, sometimes even mortgaging homes to cover costs, say shelter makers and designers.

Some corporations are giving the shelters to top executives as a perk, one dealer said.

Gone are the days when defense experts scoffed and neighbors shook their heads and chuckled.

“They’re treating me less like a crazy woman than they did before,” says Dr. Jane Orient, of Tucson, Ariz., who promotes home shelters as head of Doctors for Disaster Preparedness.

Walton McCarthy, president of shelter builder Radius Defense and Engineering in Northwood, N.H., says he is making almost four times as many of his egg-shaped, fiberglass underground shelters since Sept. 11 — roughly one a day. He is planning a bigger factory.

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Doomsday Jitters Feed Interest

CBS News Bomb ShelterOriginally published on CBS News by Charles Cooper on July 28, 2010

Is it the prospect of an apocalyptic rendezvous with disaster in late 2012, the likelihood of nuclear terrorism devastating the homeland or just another garden-variety economic meltdown – this one perhaps qualifying as The Big One? Take your pick, but enough people are sufficiently freaked out these days to feed an apparent boomlet in disaster shelters, circa 1955.

Most folks may have assumed that doomsday bunkers had been relegated to museum backrooms chronicling the Cold War. But this USA Today reminded everyone that yes, Shakespeare was right: what’s past is sometimes prologue.

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