Montecito mudslide rescue crew returns to San Diego

5 firefighters and 2 search dogs

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) - The San Diego firefighters who helped search for those missing in the Santa Barbara County mudslides are home now.

Twenty people died and three are still unaccounted for in Montecito, but the local crew was called back to San Diego as the search effort has been downgraded.

A team of five firefighters and two search dogs from San Diego were among the hundreds of first responders called to the small town west of Santa Barbara.

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"Extremely big boulders," said Battalion Chief Dan Froelich, "Initially, I thought a lot of the rocks and boulders were decorative that people would have in their yards."

Froelich said neighborhood streets still look like riverbeds lined with boulders, debris and mud one- to two-feet high more than a week after the hills collapsed.

"I don't know if Montecito will ever be the same," said Heartland Fire & Rescue Capt. Matthew Kirk.

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