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Outside Entry Blast Door
Click Photos To See Larger.

The above two photos show the outside entry blast door. This door is next to the sidewalk on the south side of the building near the parking lot. I believe the post next to the door was to secure the door in the fully open position so that large items could be moved in and out of the shelter. That's just a guess though. A playground is enclosed in the walled in area behind the door. The shelter is the full size of the walled in area. The rear inside building entry is just to the right, out of the picture, in the above left photo.

Video of outside blast door closing Spring/Summer 2009.

Thanks to Matt Garrett of Richardson Emergency Management for this video of the outside blast door closing in 2009. Matt said that this is the last time the door was operated. The Perot Museum guide tried to open it in July of 2013 but the breaker tripped after the hydraulic pump ran for a few minutes. We couldn't get the breaker reset. I believe something failed inside the 50+ year old breaker because we couldn't even get it to reengage.

Air Intake and Exhaust Anti-Blast Valves

The above left photo shows the intake air ventilator anti-blast valve. This view is looking toward the south corner of the playground area. The air intake valve is sitting on a rectangular concrete pad. The manhole cover between the concrete pad and the wall is the Escape Hatch. The ventilator concrete pad has the date "NOV 1961" written in one corner.

The above right photo shows the exhaust air anti-blast valve. This valve is in the bushes along the side of the building at the adjacent corner of the playground. The exhaust air blower located in the Men's Restroom feeds into this valve to the outside. I'm not exactly sure how the ducting goes from the exhaust blower to this valve. If I have a chance to go back and walk through the shelter again I'll try to figure it out.

Anti-Blast Valve Data Plate

This is the date plate for the air intake anti-blast valve. The manufacturer on the plate is Arthur D. Little Inc. Cambridge Mass.

Interesting Information About The Anti-Blast Valves

I wondered about the city going "all-out" to have such serious hardware installed on this shelter. It turns out that the anti-blast valves in this shelter have a very interesting history which I discovered during a visit to the City Of Dallas Municipal Archives in March of 2010. The anti-blast valves were supplied to the city as surplus property to the city from the Nevada Test Site. They were made available to the city for only the cost of shipping them to Dallas. I located a letter in the construction records for this shelter which stated that the valves were available to the city as surplus because they had completed their testing at the Nevada proving area. It says everything in the letter except that these valves underwent actual nuclear blast tests but they very well may have. I don't see why they would have been "tested" at the Nevada proving area unless that was the case. See documents below for info.

Documents From The City Of Dallas Municipal Archives

March 9, 1961

June 14, 1961

Surplus Propery Application

Here are several documents I found in the City Of Dallas Municipal Archives concerning the anti-blast valves in the old Dallas EOC. I was really surprised when I came across these. Click on each thumbnail to see the Adobe PDF file of each document.

More intersting Anti-Blast Valve Info.

While searching for info on the NEAR receiver I came across the following in the Research Projects section on page 24 of the 1957 Federal Civil Defense Administration Annual Report which was published in 1958.

7. Anti-Blast Valve Closures,A. D. Little, Inc.-The development, design, and fabrication of prototypes of anti-blast closures for ventilation openings in protective structures. The prototype devices were shipped to the Nevada Test Site for testing.

No mention here either if the Anti-Blast Valves were actually tested in nuclear blast tests. I might try contacting the Nevada Test Site Museum and see what they have to say.

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