No Need To Panic

The box-office success of the Hollywood thriller Panic Room has inspired a flood of requests for similar hideaways from people building new homes, contractors say. Such rooms have long been popular among wealthier homeowners (and in Israel, where bullet- and fire-resistant security rooms have been mandated for all new buildings and apartments since 1992). But real-life panic rooms are not necessarily like the one in the movie. For one thing, they're usually called (less alarmingly) safe rooms. Most are smaller and less elaborate than the model in the film. For $10,000 to $15,000 you can get a just-the-basics shelter with blastproof...

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