In California: NorCal faces more power shutoffs, state sees record-breaking meth busts

Plus: A new park will commemorate the court case that led to end of school segregation, and California may get a privacy upgrade.But first, some feel-good animal news: A black bear who was found with severe burns on all four paws from the North Complex fire has been safely returned to the wild.I’m Winston Gieseke, philanthropy and special sections editor for The Desert Sun in Palm Springs welcoming you to the middle of the week and today’s California headlines.In California brings you top Golden State stories and commentary from across the USA TODAY Network and beyond. Get it free, straight to your inbox.Northern California winds pick up, power shutoffs likelyPacific Gas & Electric announced its plans to shut off power Wednesday evening in parts of Northern California, where heavy winds are feared to fan the flames of wildfires.Approximately 54,000 PG&E customers could be affected by the shut-offs in the following counties: Alameda, Amador, Butte, Calaveras, Contra Costa, El Dorado, Humboldt, Lake, Monterey, Napa, Nevada, Placer, Plumas, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Santa Cruz, Shasta, Sierra, Solano, Sonoma, Tehama, Trinity, Yolo and Yuba. In addition, two tribal communities could be affected, the L.A. Times reported.Heavy winds, reportedly reaching 55 mph, caused the red flag warning, which was issued Tuesday by the National Weather Service. Gusts began to pick up Wednesday morning. By shutting off power, PG&E hopes to prevent fires from starting as a result of power lines damaged or destroyed in the winds. “We really view it as a last resort option,” Mark Quinlan, PG&E’s incident commander, told USA Today.Shutoffs were to begin as early as Wednesday at 6 p.m. in some areas with power remaining off until 10 p.m. Friday; temperatures are likely to reach the 90s during the three-day period. PG&E equipment is under investigation as a possible cause of the Zogg Fire, which began Sept. 27 and has burned 56,338 acres.As threats increase up north, the Associated Press reports that fire crews from across the state were being deployed to Northern California because of “renewed threats.”Even though most of the large-scale fires that erupted over the past eight weeks are either fully or significantly contained, it doesn’t mean the work is over. “Containment means that firefighters have lines holding in a fire … it doesn’t mean a fire has stopped burning,” AP noted.Meanwhile, downstate …California sees record-breaking meth bustsThe U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) has reported the largest domestic seizure of methamphetamine in the agency’s history: Approximately 2,224 pounds of the drug were discovered Oct. 2 in the Riverside County cities of Moreno Valley and Perris, according to the Los Angeles Times.Earlier in the week, it was reported that the U.S. Customs and Border Protection netted an even bigger meth score on Oct. 9, a week after the Riverside bust — more than 3,000 pounds — at the Otay Mesa Port of Entry in San Diego.Combined, said Timoth


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