Kansas Turnpike Offers Tornado Shelters

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) – State officials want to remind drivers that nearly 30 public tornado shelters are available along the Kansas Turnpike.

Turnpike spokeswoman Lisa Callahan says most of the shelters are in the restrooms of service areas in Belle Plaine, Towanda, Matfield Green, Emporia, Topeka and Lawrence.

Smaller shelters also are available at most of the turnpike’s toll plazas.

Most of the shelters are underground. They are accessed by opening a hatch and climbing down a short ladder.

Callahan says at least 20 people can fit comfortably in the smallest shelters, and more if circumstances require it.

Every turnpike toll plaza has a tornado shelter except Tonganoxie/Eudora. There are no storm shelters along I-70 or any highways controlled by KDoT.