End of world predictions, Mayan calendar bring boost in emergency shelter sales
Brian Troutman, @btrout_abc2news
12:03 PM, Dec 10, 2012
12:27 PM, Dec 10, 2012
Where will Ron Hubbard be on the day the Mayans predicted the world will end – 20 feet underground.
Whether you believe the ancient Mayans accurately predicted the end of the world or not, there's no hiding the fact that it has affected Hubbard.
Hubbard is an award-winning designer and steel fabricator and has been building survival shelters since 1981. His California-based business, Atlas Survival Shelters, has been building safe havens from natural disasters, wartime threats and etc. for about that long. Business has been good – he normally sells one or two shelters a month.
But, as time has closed in on the Mayan December 21, 2012 doomsday , the sale of his shelters designed to protect families in the most extreme and unimaginable situations has exploded.
"We've gone from one a month to one a day," Hubbard says. "I sold four on Friday."
Hubbard says business began to boom as discussions by Congress on the threat of Iran were publicized. He says he has had customers from all walks of life, including politicians and government officials.
Among those, he says, are astrophysicists that say there will be a solar storm that corresponds to the December 21 doomsday date.
"I don't have an opinion on the Mayan calendar," Hubbard says. "But, when astrophysicists come to me, buy my shelters and tell me to be prepared for solar flares, radiation, EMPs… I'm going underground on the 19th and coming out on the 23rd. It's just in case anybody's right."
Hubbard's bomb-resistant shelters have gotten plenty of publicity in recent months. He touts the structures for being able to sit a safe 20 feet below the surface of the ground. The structures have the amenities of homes but also include escape tunnels and decontamination rooms.
"People really like how I design my shelter," he says.
Hubbard is now doing as many news interviews as he is selling shelters. He's been on National Geographic's Doomsday Preppers, and says he has things lined up with television stations in several countries, including Brazil and Mexico.
As far as specifics on who has bought his shelters, he says he doesn't keep a paper trail in attempt to protect the privacy of his customers.