When tornadoes hit, survivors hid in tubs and shipping containers

MARBURY, Ala. (AP) — An Alabama engine mechanic took refuge in a shipping container when a tornado ahead of a violent storm decimated his business and killed two of his neighbors in its destructive path through Alabama and Georgia.

The harrowing stories of David Hollon and other survivors of Thursday’s storm emerge as residents comb through the debris wrought by tornadoes and violent winds that have killed at least nine people.

In Alabama’s rural Autauga County, where at least seven people were killed, Hollon and his workers saw a massive tornado headed their way. They had to go to a shelter – now.

Hollon said they encountered a metal container near the back of his garage because the container was anchored to the ground with concrete. Once inside, Hollon began frantically phoning his neighbor. But when they heard the storm tear the garage apart, the call continued to voice mail.