Firefighters battling the raging firesFirefighters battling the raging fires

California fire: 44 dead as wildfire continue to rage

At least 42 people have been confirmed dead as a devastating wildfire continues to rage through parts of California. The fire, which has been dubbed the deadliest in U.S history, has largely incinerated the town of Paradise in northern California.

The latest death toll was announced after authorities located the remains of 13 additional victims from the Camp Fire, which also ranks as the most destructive on record in California, having leveled more than 7,100 homes and other buildings since it erupted on Thursday, officials said.

More than 15,000 more structures remained listed as threatened on Monday in an area so thick with smoke that visibility was reduced in some places to less than half a mile.

Authorities reported two more people perished over the weekend in a separate blaze, dubbed the Woolsey Fire, that has destroyed 370 structures and displaced some 200,000 people in the mountains and foothills near Southern California’s Malibu coast, west of Los Angeles.

President Donald Trump on Monday approved a major disaster declaration for California at the request of Governor Jerry Brown, hastening the availability of federal emergency assistance to fire-stricken regions of the state.

The fires have spread with an erratic intensity that has strained resources and kept firefighters struggling to keep up with the flames while catching many residents by surprise.

With inputs from Reuters. 

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