Fallout Shelters NYC


“Decades after the end of the Cold War, ominous black-and-yellow fallout shelter signs still mark buildings across New York City’s five boroughs. The actual number of designated fallout shelters in the city is difficult to discern. What is known is that by 1963, an estimated 18,000 shelters had been designated, and the Department of Defense had plans to add another 34,000 shelters citywide. While the presence of a fallout shelter in one’s building may have given some residents peace of mind in an era when nuclear destruction seemed imminent, in reality, most of New York’s fallout shelters were little more than basements marked by an official government sign. A small percentage of shelters were fortified underground bunkers stocked with emergency supplies, but these were rare and primarily built for high-ranking government officials. The majority of shelters, including nearly all those that were visibly marked, were known as ‘community shelters,’ and by all accounts, they offered little special protection. Inspector guidelines simply indicated that ‘community shelters’ should be kept free of trash and debris and have a ventilation system that can provide a ‘safe and tolerable environment for a specified shelter occupancy time.’ Regulations for the ventilation systems appeared to be open to interpretation, leaving individual inspectors to determine which of the city’s windowless basements would ultimately make the cut. …”
Fallout Shelters: Why some New Yorkers never planned to evacuate after a nuclear disaster
What the government didn’t mention about fallout shelters
Helter Shelter: NYC’s Fallout Shelters Basically Don’t Exist Anymore
YouTube: Here’s why there are nuclear fallout shelter signs on buildings in NYC

About 1960s: Days of Rage

Bill Davis - 1960s: Days of Rage
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