Deadly California Fire Finally Contained

The huge wildfire that killed dozens of people and destroyed thousands of homes in northern California has been fully contained after burning for more than two weeks.

The California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection says the blaze has been surrounded by firefighters on Sunday after several days of rain in the Paradise area.

The nation's deadliest wildfire in a century killed at least 85 people, while 249 are on a list of those unaccounted for.

READ MORE: Rain Dampens Deadly California Wildfire

Image: Getty Images.

The number of missing dropped in recent days as officials confirmed more people were alive.

Crews continued sifting through ash and debris for human remains.

The fire began on November 8 in the parched Sierra Nevada foothills and quickly spread across 620 square kilometres, destroying most of Paradise in a day.

A firefighter monitors a burning home as the so-called Camp Fire moves through Magalia, after ripping through the time of Paradise. Image: Getty Images

Nearly 19,000 buildings, most of them homes, are gone.

Firefighters got a boost last week from the first significant winter storm to hit California.

It dropped an estimated 18 centimetres of rain over the burn area over a three-day period without causing significant mudslides, said Hannah Chandler-Cooley of the National Weather Service.

Tim Biglow tries to save the furnitures from the Woolsey fire in Malibu. Image: AAP

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

Los Angeles County sheriff's officials said they were in the last phase of repopulating Malibu and unincorporated areas of the county.

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READ MORE: The Devastating Wildfires Tearing Through California

READ MORE: U.S. Wildfire Leaves Town Of Paradise In Ruins

At the height of the fire, 250,000 fled their homes.

Three people died and 1643 buildings, most of them homes, were destroyed, officials said.