TULSA - The storm shelter business is hopping, with tornado season opening and memories of last year's devastation still fresh in people's minds.
Those considering a shelter will likely find themselves waiting weeks, or even months, for an installation.
Former meteorologist Dan Threlkeld with Tornado Place says people would do themselves a favor by thinking ahead.
"During the winter, people think about getting a storm shelter, but they tend to wait until the Spring is here, then the phones begin to ring and everybody wants a shelter," he told KRMG.
He added that the majority of the calls come from areas which have recently suffered tornado damage.
"In and around the Moore, Norman area -- we get calls from that area every single day," he said, adding that they've also gotten a lot of business in Broken Arrow, which had a small tornado touch down last Spring.
When it comes to choosing a shelter, Threlkeld recommends people do their homework.
"It's much like shopping for a car. You want to not just go to one place -- you want to go to as many as you can. Ask a lot of questions. Maybe do your research before you go shopping."
And people also need to research their local laws.
Municipalities usually require a permit for most types of storm shelters, but the laws vary greatly from town to town.
The permit fees also jump around from place to place.
"Northeast Oklahoma tends to have some of the very highest rates for those permits," Threlkeld said.
Research backs him up -- the national average runs around $25 to $35.
In Tulsa, the permitting fee can run well over $200.