Los Angeles: The fire that has ravaged northern California is now almost completely contained, authorities said on Thursday as the death toll rose to 84.

Rain fell in the first measurable amounts in months in the drought-stricken area, helping put out hot spots and smouldering fires, the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection said.

It said the so-called Camp Fire is now 95 per cent contained.

The number of people listed as unaccounted for in the deadliest and most destructive fire in state history stands at 563. Previously, the death toll had been put at 83.

Another three people died in a second major blaze that struck Malibu in southern California.

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.