Fears over US/NKorea tensions prompt some in Tennessee to consider bomb shelters

Bomb shelter. (WZTV)

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WZTV) - As tensions between the U.S. and North Korea reached new heights on Tuesday, the demand is growing for bomb shelters like those found under some East Nashville homes.

Underneath Beverly Nichols' duplex is a relic from the Cold War.

Her home has two bomb shelters still in usable condition with running water, electricity and a fresh air vent. Lately, though, they're saving space and not lives.

"No, I use it for storage," Nichols said. "It's great for storage 'cause the bunk beds are storage."

The shelter is one of an unknown number still around in Nashville, though the dispute with North Korea may be convincing people across the country to build a modern version.

The Rising S Company builds elaborate shelters with air systems and nuclear fallout protections across the globe, including one recently near Nashville.

Its average shelter costs $150,000 and some go up above $200,000.

General manager Gary Lynch said the unrest with North Korea's leader is bringing in customers who wouldn't necessarily have been interested in a fallout shelter before.

"He's entirely too dangerous for the world's good," Lynch said. "Right now it's not about left or right politics. It's about are we gonna have to defend our homeland."

Similar fears convinced homeowners decades ago to build the shelters under Nichols' home.

She admitted the news about North Korea did lead her to think about what it might be like using it at least for a moment.

"And then I got to thinking the fresh air [from the shelter's vent] is scary," Nichols said. "If there was a bomb, you'd still be breathing the air from the bomb."

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