Four days to go until the Mayan Doomsday - and there's a rush on for bomb-proof survival bunkers (complete with leather sofas and plasma screen TVs)
- Ron Hubbard builds stylish underground bomb-proof shelter in California
- Designer's business has gone from selling one per month to one per day
- Some say Mayan Long Count calendar proves world will end this Friday
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By Mark Duell
PUBLISHED: 11:53 EST, 17 December 2012 | UPDATED: 03:18 EST, 18 December 2012
If you’re seriously concerned about the world ending on Friday, then this could be just the ticket.
Ron Hubbard has built a luxurious underground bomb-proof shelter in Montebello, California, with a leather sofa, plasma TV and wooden flooring - just in case the Mayans’ predictions come true.
The civilisation’s Long Count calendar which began 5,125 years ago in 3113 B.C. ends on December 21, 2012 - sparking fears among a small group of people that a major catastrophe could happen.
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Bomb-proof: Children test out the bunk beds in the underground survival shelter in Montebello, California
Going underground: The luxurious bomb, nuclear and chemical weapon-proof bunkers are kitted out with beds, kitchens, flushing toilets and even fireplaces - and sell for an average price of £46,000 based on fittings
Handle: A young girl stands in the bunker, which has a leather sofa, plasma TV and wooden flooring
Mr Hubbard manufactures hi-tech underground ‘recreational bomb shelters’ - and has seen his business boom from selling one a month to one a day in the past year.
THE END - OR A NEW CALENDAR?
Inscriptions in Mexico refer to Bolon Yokte - a god associated with war and the underworld - 'descending from the sky' at the end of a 13th period of 400 years on December 21 2012.
But many Mayan experts believe the ‘apocalypse’ concept is a false interpretation of their 5,125-year Long Count cycle as Friday simply marks the start of a new calendar.
The luxurious bomb, nuclear and chemical weapon-proof bunkers are kitted out with beds, kitchens, flushing toilets and even fireplaces - and sell for an average price of £46,000.
Mr Hubbard revealed that he is currently rushing the instalment of two shelters - one in New York and another in Indiana - in time for the potential Doomsday anticipated by some people this Friday.
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He said: ‘I will be heading into my shelter on December 21 just because I have one and if any of the astrophysicists are right, I would feel really stupid.
Tidy: The 500 sq ft cylindrical shelters - produced in California - each measure 10ft in diameter and 50ft long
Home comforts: A bed is prepared in the shelter with the Texas flag on the pillows and duvet cover
Practical: The bunkers have escape tunnels with one sided hatches which can only open from the inside, as well as sealed contamination rooms between the entrance and living areas
‘I've sold shelters to astrophysicists who believe there is a possibility that we could be hit with a strong solar flare or large amounts of radiation.
'I will be heading into my shelter on December 21 just because I have one and if any of the astrophysicists are right, I would feel really stupid'
Ron Hubbard, shelter manufacturer
‘I'll spend three days underground in the shelter just to be safe. If you have a shelter you might as well go in it. I don't think anything will happen but you never know.’
The 500 sq ft cylindrical shelters - produced at Mr Hubbard’s based in California - each measure 10ft in diameter and 50ft long.
They have escape tunnels with one sided hatches which can only open from the inside, as well as sealed contamination rooms between the entrance and living areas.
But they have proved popular not just with those preparing for armageddon, but hunters too.
Installation: The chambers are mean to be installed 20 feet underground - offering comfort as the world falls apart around you
Relax in comfort: A leather sofa and basins can be found inside the Doomsday underground bunker
Space optimization: There are a range of shelters for sale- this one being cheaper than the luxury edition
Mr Hubbard said: ‘I started making them because I wanted one for myself, but didn't want to pay $1million (£600,000) to $2million (£1.2million) for them.
'I'll spend three days underground in the shelter just to be safe. If you have a shelter you might as well go in it. I don't think anything will happen but you never know'
Ron Hubbard, shelter manufacturer
‘We get a lot of people who buy the shelters as a form of insurance for the worst case scenario. Just like someone would buy fire insurance in case their home suffers a fire.
‘We have gone from selling one a month to one a day in the past year since Obama's re-election.
‘Many people are afraid of economic meltdown, others simply want to have one just in case something catastrophic does happen.
‘People love them. They make a very nice hunting cabin or weekend retreat, so they don't just have to sit there waiting for a catastrophe.’
Creature comforts: The small dining area with an ornament on the side is reminiscent of a table at a diner
Home made: There is a mini fridge and microwave in the shelter but little other space for food preparation
Tight quarters: Visitors likened the California shelter to a studio apartment when they looked around
CCTV with a view of the world upstairs: Add a few trinkets and posters and you have a home from home
When I say, will something happen, I mean as in people acting crazy because they don't actually understand the concept of December 21st according to the Mayans. Personally, I think it will be just another day, but it concerns me that if people are buying bomb shelters at such a rapid rate leading up to it, then what is their mindset? What are they thinking? And if you're gonna buy into a piece of the Mayan culture, you should at the very least understand some of the rest of it... You know, like understanding that their calendar was cyclical and they made no reference to doomsdays that I'm aware of - especially not when it came to December 21st, 2012.