COLUMBUS: Ohio homeowners could be eligible for a rebate for installing a safe room to protect themselves during a tornado or extreme winds.

State officials, who announced the new rebate program Tuesday, say it will help in the construction of 150 safe rooms. The rooms can be built in the basement or elsewhere near the home. They are capable of withstanding winds exceeding 200 mph.

Residents selected for the program could get a rebate up to 87.5 percent of the cost or a maximum of $6,000.

Most of the funding comes from the Federal Emergency Management Agency, with the state also providing a portion. Homeowners would be responsible for 12.5 percent of the costs.

Ohioans have until Oct. 1 to apply for the program.

Online: Ohio Emergency Management Agency at