Part of California highway near Big Sur collapses into ocean

A sizable chunk of California's Highway 1, which runs the majority of the length of the state's Pacific coastline, was washed out this week following a winter storm.

California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) Fifth District tweeted a message Friday warning drivers of the highway closure due to "partial washout" of the road.

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The chunk of the highway, located 15 miles south of Big Sur at Rat Creek, was destroyed as a result of heavy rainfall. 

Caltrans officials told CNN debris from above the road "overwhelmed drainage infrastructure, flowed across the highway, and eroded the road resulting in the complete loss of a segment of Highway 1."

Drone footage shared by Caltrans District 5 showed the extent of the damage.

Toks Omishakin, director of the California Department of Transportation, noted that it could be weeks before the portion of the highway is repaired.