- The Washington Times - Saturday, January 22, 2022

The Monterey County California Sheriff’s office has ordered evacuations near Big Sur and closed a stretch of the iconic Pacific Coast Highway amid a wildfire that broke out late Friday. 

The California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection announced Saturday that the wind-driven fire had burned over two square miles and was 5% contained. 

Strong winds knocked down trees and power lines overnight in the San Francisco Bay Area and parts of the Sierra Nevada. 

Vice President Kamala Harris visited the state Friday to announce $600 million in federal funding to help bolster California’s wildfire recovery efforts from the 2021 wildfire season. 

More than 2.56 million acres were consumed by wildfires in California last year, destroying 3,269 structures. 

Wind gusts up to 70 mph were expected in Southern California Saturday afternoon. 

• This story includes wire reports.

• Joseph Clark can be reached at jclark@washingtontimes.com.

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