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The Save-A-Lot on South White Street in Athens, Tenn., was destroyed when a tornado swept through the area early Wednesday, Nov. 30, 2016.

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Athens, Tenn., storm damage

A rescue team from the Chattanooga Fire Department responded to McMinn County after storms ripped through the area Wednesday morning.

By the team they arrived, most people had been accounted for. However, the team spent the morning scouring through severely damaged homes searching for trapped residents, according to Special Operations Chief Daniel Hague.

Some of that same crew was on Talley Road last week extricating students from the bus that crashed after leaving Woodmore Elementary School.

Hague was one of several local and emergency officials who spoke at an afternoon news conference.

McMinn County Sheriff Joe Guy said the response and cooperation of emergency personnel was "phenomenal."

"We are extremely fortunate that we have not had a fatality at this point," Guy said. "That's something that I think we're blessed to be able to say, considering that massive amount of damage that's out there in some of these residential areas."

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