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Rescue phase ends in Montecito mudslide zone

A firefighter stands near a car caught up in a mud slide in Montecito, California on January 12, 2018.
A firefighter stands near a car caught up in a mud slide in Montecito, California on January 12, 2018.
FREDERIC J. BROWN/AFP/Getty Images

Officials say search and rescue operations have ended in Montecito, where mudslides have killed at least 20 people.

Santa Barbara County Sheriff Bill Brown says authorities transitioned Sunday morning to a search and recovery phase.

Brown says the move allows authorities to release resources that are no longer needed and slow down search operations to a safer pace.

Boulders carried down nearby hillsides from the overnight rains remain beside a broken fence in Carpinteria, California on January 9, 2018.
Boulders carried down nearby hillsides from the overnight rains remain beside a broken fence in Carpinteria, California on January 9, 2018.
FREDERIC J. BROWN/AFP/Getty Images

The number of fatalities in Tuesday's flash flood is now 20. Four people remain missing.

In other news, Amtrak is adding rail cars to each of its five daily roundtrip trains between Los Angeles and Santa Barbara to accommodate commuters grappling with the ongoing closure of highway 101.

Transportation officials say the freeway will remain closed indefinitely as crews struggle to remove mud, boulders and crushed cars that filled lanes.

A car is submerged in muddy water in a flooded section of Highway 101 car on January 11, 2018 in Montecito, California.
A car is submerged in muddy water in a flooded section of Highway 101 car on January 11, 2018 in Montecito, California.
Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

Many residents still haven't been able to return to their homes to check the damage. As of Sunday afternoon, officials had completed only 35 percent of their assessments of residential and commercial structures. But the Santa Barbara County Office of Emergency Management released an interactive web map that lets property owners see the damage assessments that have been done.

On Wednesday, the county will open a recovery and assistance center at Calvary Chapel Santa Barbara. It will be open from 11 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. on weekdays and from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturdays.