As a concept, panic or safe rooms date back to ancient Egypt. Inside your house, a room like this can be used to protect you and your family from harm. While some think of them as money pits to placate the fears of rich and the paranoid, modern-day panic rooms are becoming increasingly popular among those desiring security in a dangerous world. If constructed properly, they are the unparalleled in providing safety. Hitesh Raj Bhagat tells you how:
Ventilation and HVAC
Ideally, the room should be air tight – no air gaps around the doors (construction specialists will know how to do this). This also means that staying for longer periods requires a system to keep the room warm/cool and to re-circulate fresh air.
Supplies Keep enough canned food, bottled water and some clothes handy. Other essential supplies include items like fl ashlights, fi rst aid equipment and basic self defence equipment.
Here’s where costs can skyrocket; oxygen masks, oxygen tanks, night vision goggles, fl ares and weapons can all be bought for a fair chunk of cash.
If you’re locked in, you need a way to call for help. In a panic situation, you may not have time to grab your cellphone, so a dedicated landline phone is essential.
Small chemical toilets are ideal for this purpose. If the panic room is being made while a house is being constructed, a small toilet can be built in too.
Walls and construction
Thick concrete walls are a must for a room like this – at least 8-inches thick, but they can also go up to 2 feet. Walls can also be lined with Kevlar and/or lead plates.
Grades of panic room
Is the room designed to only protect against intruders? What about storms, fl oods, terrorist attacks, nuclear blasts or chemical warfare? Depending on what the room is designed to do and for how long, a specialist needs to be Illustration: ARINDAM called to design and equip the room.