After More Than Two Weeks, California’s Deadliest Wildfire Is Finally Contained

The Camp Fire claimed at least 85 lives.

A neighborhood in Paradise, California, consumed by the Camp Fire.Noah Berger/AP

Early on Sunday morning, Cal Fire, the state’s forestry and fire protection agency, announced that California’s deadliest wildfire is now 100 percent contained. Camp Fire, which decimated the town of Paradise and much of Butte County, has destroyed nearly 14,000 homes, more than 500 businesses, and thousands of other structures. It has burned through 153,000 acres, and left at least 85 people dead.

Thousands of displaced people are now crammed into emergency shelters, staying in hotels, or camping outside. Though the fire is now contained, there are still 249 people missing—down from more than 1,000 just a few days ago—and authorities expect the death toll to rise, the Washington Post reports.

For 17 days, firefighters have been battling the blaze, but the last three days saw consistent rainfall, helping them get a handle on the fire. The rain, however, also poses potential dangers of its own: “Areas experiencing significant rainfall following a wildfire are at risk for debris flows and flash flooding,” warned the Butte County Sheriff’s Office.

THE BIG QUESTION...

as we head into 2020 is whether politics and media will be a billionaires’ game, or a playing field where the rest of us have a shot. That's what Mother Jones CEO Monika Bauerlein tackles in her annual December column—"Billionaires Are Not the Answer"—about the state of journalism and our plans for the year ahead.

We can't afford to let independent reporting depend on the goodwill of the superrich: Please help Mother Jones build an alternative to oligarchy that is funded by and answerable to its readers. Please join us with a tax-deductible, year-end donation so we can keep going after the big stories without fear, favor, or false equivalency.

THE BIG QUESTION...

as we head into 2020 is whether politics and media will be a billionaires’ game, or a playing field where the rest of us have a shot.

Please read our annual column about the state of journalism and Mother Jones' plans for the year ahead, and help us build an alternative to oligarchy by supporting our people-powered journalism with a year-end gift today.

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our newsletters

Subscribe and we'll send Mother Jones straight to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate

We have a new comment system! We are now using Coral, from Vox Media, for comments on all new articles. We'd love your feedback.