Mobile, Alabama (July 26, 2011) - White-Spunner Construction, Inc. recently completed three new Harrison County shelters designed to weather any storm. Five years after Hurricane Katrina devastated Harrison County, Mississippi, the Mobile-based construction company broke ground in May 2010 on the Federal Emergency Management Agency shelters built to meet the agency’s stringent 361 guidelines for tornado and hurricane shelters. A ribbon cutting for all three shelters will be held Friday at the Saucier/Lizana Road location at 23771 Saucier-Lizana Road in Saucier, Miss. The public and media are encouraged to attend the event, which is set for 10 a.m. and hosted by the Harrison County Board of Supervisors. “White-Spunner Construction is honored to have been chosen to build this trio of shelters for Harrison County,” said Seth Smith, project manager for White-Spunner Construction. “The $11.7 million project was constructed on time and within budget constraints,” Smith said. “Completing these structures in time for hurricane season 2011 was a high priority,” Smith added. “Now Harrison County residents will have three safe havens to protect them when dangerous storms threaten their safety.” “Each of the three 14,724 square-foot facilities will accommodate 1,000 people for the short-term and 676 evacuees for the long-term,” said Mike Wilson, director of maintenance for Harrison County. The shelters – located in Saucier, Lyman and Pass Christian – also feature storm-proof windows and doors and self-contained water and sewer systems. The goal of the FEMA guidelines is to provide "near-absolute" protection from death or serious injury, taking into consideration the durability and sustainability of the entire shelter, including walls, roofs, openings and area arrangement. Harrison County suffered catastrophic effects from both Hurricane Camille in August 1969 and Hurricane Katrina in August 2005. The county - which includes the large coastal cities of Biloxi and Gulfport and the smaller coastal towns of Long Beach and Pass Christian - was hit particularly hard by Hurricane Katrina’s Category 5 winds and 30-foot storm surge. “It is our hope and prayer that the residents of Mississippi will never need to seek refuge in these shelters,” Smith said. “But in the unfortunate and likely event that powerful hurricanes hit Harrison County in the future, these three FEMA shelters stand ready to provide residents with lifesaving protection.” Wilson said White-Spunner Construction has exceeded his expectations. “White-Spunner has been a joy to work with,” he said. “I’ve worked with contractors before, during and after Katrina and White-Spunner Construction is a step above them all. They are a fantastic company with which to work.” The Saucier shelter is located on Saucier Lizana Road; the Lyman shelter on County Farm Road; and the Pass Christian shelter on Labouy Road. Additionally, White-Spunner Construction, Inc. is currently building three FEMA 361 hurricane safety shelters in Jackson County. The construction company broke ground on the $8,443,919 project in March and the shelters are slated for completion in January 2012.