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Cellphone alerts helped Tennessee couple escape to basement

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BAXTER, Tenn. (AP) — A search continued Wednesday for survivors of deadly tornadoes in Tennessee, where 24 people were killed and others remain missing.

Gov. Bill Lee declared an emergency and sent the National Guard to help with search-and-rescue efforts Wednesday.

The twisters struck after midnight Tuesday, tearing apart more than 140 buildings and burying some people in the rubble as they slept. People across Nashville were awakened by outdoor sirens warning of the tornado danger, but such warning systems don't exist in some rural areas.

Some survivors credit alerts that blared from their cellphones for saving their lives.