California, November 23: The fire that has ravaged northern California is now almost completely contained, as the death toll rose to 84. The California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection yesterday said rain fell in the first measurable amounts in months in the drought-stricken area and this helped put out hot spots and smoldering fires.
It said the so-called Camp Fire is now 95 percent contained. The number of people listed as unaccounted for in the deadliest and most destructive fire in state history stands at 563. In the north, the Camp Fire has scorched 153,000 acres of land and destroyed more than 13,600 homes since it broke out on November 8.
The blaze forced the evacuation of some 52,000 people who are staying in shelters. Schools across the San Francisco Bay Area were closed yesterday as winds carried smoke from the wildfires.
San Francisco International Airport said, nearly 200 flights have been delayed because of low visibility and smoke.
The staggering toll was announced as President Trump made plans to visit California to meet with people affected by the wildfires. It would mark his second trip as president to the nation’s most populous state.
The fire is also causing a major public health problem as smoke choked huge swaths of Northern California, including Sacramento and the Bay Area. Dozens of schools across the region canceled classes as authorities urged residents to remain indoors.