Nine people have now been reported killed in the tornado that hit Alabama state in the US on Thursday. Rescue operation continues in the area, the New York Times (NYT) reported.

In Autauga County, which includes Marbury, rescuers went door to door in some places, searching for the dead and wounded.

In Spalding County of Georgia city, middle-school principals wielded chainsaws to clear driveways to help reunite students trapped on campus with their parents, NYT reported.

In nearby Butts County, the authorities said, a tree fell on a vehicle, killing a 5-year-old boy and critically injuring one of his parents.

Autauga County near Montgomery, have suffered the worst due to the storm. The NYT report quoting local authorities said that out of the nine people killed up till Friday, seven belonged to Autauga alone.

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Although no fatalities have been reported from Selma, a city nearby, there has been considerable damage in much of the city including to homes and businesses.

The storms have hit many other places that have been recovering from a bitter winter in the US. As per the NYT report, across the region that was hit by the tornado officials have urged locals to remain off the roads warning of the perils that linger even after the storm has passed.

In Georgia city, both of the fatalities reported there were caused by falling debris, including a 5-year-old in Butts County and a worker with the State Department of Transportation, officials said.

A massive operation is underway to restore electricity to thousands of homes. People may still be trapped in the wreckage. The NYT report quotes Scott Hendrix who was trapped in his home for more than five hours. He told NYT “I heard what sounded like a loud explosion and suddenly I was stuck,”. When he called 911, “They said nobody could get to me,” he said. Eventually, he was rescued and reunited with his wife, Tracie, who had been at work when the storm hit.

In December 2021, more than 80 people were killed following tornadoes that hit six states in the US in which a Kentucky district judge also lost his life.

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