Over 1,500 acres and counting... Wildfire rages across California, forces evacuations and closure of highways

The blaze started on Friday night in a steep canyon and quickly spread toward the sea, fanned by strong winds up to 50 mph. More than 250 firefighters from multiple agencies and volunteer groups have contained 20 per cent of the fire

FP Staff January 24, 2022 14:09:28 IST
A wildfire near California's scenic Highway 1, which winds along the Pacific coastline, prompted evacuation orders in Monterey County on Friday night. The Colorado Fire was sparked in Palo Colorado Canyon in the Big Sur region, according to the county's office of emergency services. AP
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A wildfire near California's scenic Highway 1, which winds along the Pacific coastline, prompted evacuation orders in Monterey County on Friday night. The Colorado Fire was sparked in Palo Colorado Canyon in the Big Sur region, according to the county's office of emergency services. AP
The blaze has burned at least 2.3 square miles of brush and redwood trees, said Cecile Juliette, a spokeswoman for the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection. “The fire lined up with the wind and the terrain and that gave the fire a lot of energy to make a big run,” she said. AP
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The blaze has burned at least 2.3 square miles of brush and redwood trees, said Cecile Juliette, a spokeswoman for the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection. “The fire lined up with the wind and the terrain and that gave the fire a lot of energy to make a big run,” she said. AP
Authorities made contact with about 500 residents, urging them to evacuate the sparsely populated area between Carmel and Big Sur. More than 250 firefighters, aided by water-dropping aircraft, contained about 20 per cent of the blaze by Saturday evening. AP
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Authorities made contact with about 500 residents, urging them to evacuate the sparsely populated area between Carmel and Big Sur. More than 250 firefighters, aided by water-dropping aircraft, contained about 20 per cent of the blaze by Saturday evening. AP
Authorities closed a stretch of Highway 1 with no estimated time for reopening. The two-lane highway along Big Sur is prone to closures due to fire and mudslides from heavy rain made portions of the roadway collapse last year and in 2017. AP
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Authorities closed a stretch of Highway 1 with no estimated time for reopening. The two-lane highway along Big Sur is prone to closures due to fire and mudslides from heavy rain made portions of the roadway collapse last year and in 2017. AP
A CalFire unit said it sent four engines to help fight the fire. And there 13 agencies responding to help fight the fire, KCRA reported. The fire can be seen from Santa Cruz County, even though it is about 70 miles away in Monterey County, CalFire said. AP
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A CalFire unit said it sent four engines to help fight the fire. And there 13 agencies responding to help fight the fire, KCRA reported. The fire can be seen from Santa Cruz County, even though it is about 70 miles away in Monterey County, CalFire said. AP
The National Weather Service said a similar windy event happened in Bay Area nearly a year ago. A red flag warning of extreme fire danger was issued then due to the strong winds and much drier conditions. This time, the region received a reprieve from December storms that dumped heavy snow in the mountains and partially refilled parched reservoirs. AP
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The National Weather Service said a similar windy event happened in Bay Area nearly a year ago. A red flag warning of extreme fire danger was issued then due to the strong winds and much drier conditions. This time, the region received a reprieve from December storms that dumped heavy snow in the mountains and partially refilled parched reservoirs. AP
The weather agency points to California's drought conditions as a possible reason for the unusual January fire. According to the National Integrated Drought Information System, more than half of the state is experiencing severe drought, which makes for longer fire seasons with "high burn intensity, dry fuels and large fire spatial extent." In the area of the wildfire, rain is not forecast for the next seven days or so, according to the NWS. AP
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The weather agency points to California's drought conditions as a possible reason for the unusual January fire. According to the National Integrated Drought Information System, more than half of the state is experiencing severe drought, which makes for longer fire seasons with "high burn intensity, dry fuels and large fire spatial extent." In the area of the wildfire, rain is not forecast for the next seven days or so, according to the NWS. AP
The Colorado Fire comes following promises from the Biden administration to address the country's wildfire crisis. On Friday, Vice President Kamala Harris announced a $600 million federal investment towards helping California recover from last year's wildfires. And just last week, the Department of Agriculture and US Forest Service announced a 10-year multi-billion dollar initiative to prevent wildfires. AP
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The Colorado Fire comes following promises from the Biden administration to address the country's wildfire crisis. On Friday, Vice President Kamala Harris announced a $600 million federal investment towards helping California recover from last year's wildfires. And just last week, the Department of Agriculture and US Forest Service announced a 10-year multi-billion dollar initiative to prevent wildfires. AP
Strong winds were recorded across the San Francisco Bay Area overnight, knocking down trees and power lines and causing outages to at least 18,000 Pacific Gas & Electric customers in the region, the utility said. There were no immediate reports of injuries. AP
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Strong winds were recorded across the San Francisco Bay Area overnight, knocking down trees and power lines and causing outages to at least 18,000 Pacific Gas & Electric customers in the region, the utility said. There were no immediate reports of injuries. AP
An air tanker makes a drop on the Colorado Fire burning in Big Sur, California. AP
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An air tanker makes a drop on the Colorado Fire burning in Big Sur, California. AP