Hydro One sends forestry techs to help in California wildfire recovery

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The northern California wildfire that destroyed the mountain town of Paradise and killed at least 85 people was 100% contained on Sunday, state fire officials said.

Photo/Kathleen Ronayne, File After a brief delay to let a downpour pass, volunteers resume their search for human remains at a mobile home park in Paradise, Calif.

The deadliest wildfires in California's history are now "100% contained" after burning for more than two weeks - but heavy rain is set to bring a new risk of flash flooding and mudslides.

However, Brigitte Foster, a spokeswoman for the Camp Fire unified command unit, said that full containment does not mean the fire has been extinguished.

The Camp Fire burned over 150,000 acres - the equivalent of 10 Manhattan islands - and destroyed more than 18,000 structures, according to authorities.

The catastrophic wildfire in Northern California is almost out after several days of rain, but searchers are still completing the meticulous task of combing through now-muddy ash and debris for signs of human remains.

Only 54 of the fatalities have been identified, according to the local sheriff's office in Butte County, a rural area north of the state capital Sacramento.

Rain hit the area last week, helping to contain the fire, but adding to challenges in recovery efforts.

Rescuers are searching for nearly 250 missing people
Image Rescuers are searching for nearly 250 missing people

Meanwhile, the Butte County Sheriff's Office said in a statement that 249 people remained unaccounted for till Saturday, down from more than 1,000 days ago.

Heavy downfalls that have soaked the fire zone in the past days helped douse the remaining flames, but also made it more hard for crews searching for bodies.

However, the rain also raises concerns that mudslides and debris flows could be caused in the burn scar areas of Paradise.

Butte County Sheriff Kory Honea has warned that the remains of some victims may never be found. That fire killed at least three people.

Task force leader Craig Covey, in blue jacket at center, says his team is doing a second search because there are outstanding reports of missing people whose last known address was at the mobile home park.

The California town of Paradise - which was destroyed by the wildfires - was a popular destination for retired people, with a quarter of its 27,000 residents aged 65 or older.

In Southern California, more residents returned to areas evacuated in a destructive fire as crews repaired power, telephone and gas utilities.

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