How Long Is Temporary Where Disaster Relief Shelter Is Concerned?

In most instances, disaster relief shelters are considered temporary. The ultimate goal is to provide a safe, functional shelter that can serve as a home base for families while they recover from a disaster and begin to rebuild their community and resume their ordinary life in a permanent home. However, the word temporary can actually mean a very long time when it comes to how long it takes to recover from any disastrous event. Displaced survivors may find themselves living in a temporary disaster relief shelter for months, perhaps even years. Today’s fabric shelters must be able to meet that need. 


Modern disaster relief shelters are designed for rapid deployment in large numbers. Clearspan tents engineering results in a sturdy structure with more flexible space. The refugee tent cities of yesterday are being replaced with new designs featuring state-of-the-art components and roomier, family-style habitats. Disaster relief tents are roomy enough to house sleeping space, limited storage, cooking space and personal hygiene space. 

Survivability after a disaster goes beyond a rapid response delivering immediate shelter and services to individuals and families. In order for a community to get back to business as usual, entire towns or cities may need to be raised up from temporary shelters. Larger fabric structures provide community services such as warehousing supplies, sheltering equipment, food service facilities, medical services, youth and education services, technology and communications headquarters, business support, etc.


Older designs for disaster relief tents used components that would usually require replacement within six months of constant use. Many crises that strike a community can take years of rebuilding efforts. Modern fabric structures have the potential to last many years, requiring minimal maintenance in the meantime. With lightweight construction, these structures are fully portable. As a community or business begins to slowly see successful reconstruction, temporary shelters can be relocated and put to other uses. 


The needs of emergency shelters today are met with clearspan fabric structures that are durable enough to withstand extreme climates for extended periods of time. They are weatherproof, specifically the Sunbelt Rentals tension Series, against snow, rain, sleet, wind, and heat. Fabrics today are treated with UV protectants against sun exposure. 

Clearspan design creates a tension between fabric and framework that eliminates fabric flapping in windy conditions. This innovation helps to extend the life of the structure by preventing fabric shredding as a result of friction and wear of the fabric against structural supports. Secure anchoring systems stabilize lightweight, fabric shelters firmly to the ground. This ensures a secure structure which adds to its durability factor. 

If you are responsible for managing an emergency shelter project, here are a few reasons to put your trust in a company with vast experience in the emergency shelter industry:

  • Rapid Deployment – Our experienced personnel can respond within hours to set up a base camp for managing disaster relief.
  • Capability – Our shelter designs can be integrated into one another, making easy expansion of a facility possible.
  • Versatility– Our structures can be outfitted with a variety of components to meet any need, such as doors, flooring, electricity, lighting, climate control, water, etc.
  • Skill – Our experienced crews are prepared for self-sufficiency during the base camp deployment process.
  • Affordability– Our vast inventory of clearspan structures is available for lease, rent, or sale. 

For more information on how to be prepared in the event of an emergency or disaster in your own community, please contact us. Our experienced project managers will advise you on the best products to meet your needs and guide you through the process of developing an effective disaster relief plan.

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Topics: Emergency Shelters