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Arizona Task Force canine handlers deployed to Washington mudslide

PHOENIX — Two dog handlers and their canines from the Arizona Task Force 1 (AZ-TF1) have been deployed to aid in the search and rescue efforts after the deadly March 22 mudslide in Snohomish County, Washington.

The Arizona Search Dogs and their handlers “must be certified through FEMA in search and rescue,” according to a press release.

The dogs are trained “to locate victims and indicate the position where the strongest scent is found with a focused bark alert.” The amount of certified canine and handler teams in the U.S. is less than 200.

The two dog handlers join three other search and rescue members from Arizona.

The AZ-TF1 is just one of 28 National Search and Rescue teams that are deployed when there is a local or national disaster.

Twenty-two people remain missing in the 1,500 foot-wide area.

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