X

On assignment in the fire zone with iPhone X

We take the iPhone X camera into Sonoma County, California, as clean up moves ahead.

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James Martin
James Martin is the Managing Editor of Photography at CNET. His photos capture technology's impact on society - from the widening wealth gap in San Francisco, to the European refugee crisis and Rwanda's efforts to improve health care. From the technology pioneers of Google and Facebook, photographing Apple's Steve Jobs and Tim Cook, Facebook's Mark Zuckerberg and Google's Sundar Pichai, to the most groundbreaking launches at Apple and NASA, his is a dream job for any documentary photography and journalist with a love for technology. Exhibited widely, syndicated and reprinted thousands of times over the years, James follows the people and places behind the technology changing our world, bringing their stories and ideas to life.
James Martin
Coffey Park, Tubbs Fire Santa Rosa, California on assignment iPhone X
1 of 21 James Martin/CNET

Blocks and blocks of homes were destroyed when the Tubbs Fire roared into Santa Rosa on a windy Sunday night, October 8, 2017. 

The charred remains of a car sit in the driveway of a burned home in the Coffey Park neighborhood. 

This week, I used Apple's new iPhone X to photograph alongside the EPA as the cleanup moves ahead. 

Tubbs Fire Santa Rosa, California on assignment iPhone X
2 of 21 James Martin/CNET

Lyrics from a Danny Gokey song "Tell Your Heart to Beat Again" are scrawled on what's left of a home alongside an American flag in Santa Rosa, California.

Nuns Fire Santa Rosa, California on assignment iPhone X
3 of 21 James Martin/CNET

Framed in the doorway of a lone standing wall, an EPA worker surveys a property for household hazardous waste in the Fountaingrove neighborhood of Santa Rosa, California.

Tubbs Fire Santa Rosa, California on assignment iPhone X
4 of 21 James Martin/CNET

A charred white wasteland of rubble as far as the eye can see in the Fountaingrove neighborhood of Santa Rosa, California.

Tubbs Fire Santa Rosa, California on assignment iPhone X
5 of 21 James Martin/CNET

The scorched remains of a motorcycle -- twisted, warped and melted -- sits in the Coffey Park neighborhood of Santa Rosa, California. The iPhone X camera picks up incredible detail and tones.

Tubbs Fire Santa Rosa, California on assignment iPhone X
6 of 21 James Martin/CNET

Amid the rubble are signs of life. Two flowers sprout from the ground in an image taken in Portrait Mode on the iPhone X.

Tubbs Fire Santa Rosa, California on assignment iPhone X
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An EPA cleanup crew surveys properties in the Fountaingrove neighborhood of Santa Rosa, California. 

Nuns Fire Santa Rosa, California on assignment iPhone X
8 of 21 James Martin/CNET

Technicians first survey a property with a highly sensitive gamma MicroR/meter to detect radiation that can sometimes be present in homes.

Nuns Fire Santa Rosa, California on assignment iPhone X
9 of 21 James Martin/CNET

A Portrait Mode photo of an EPA clean-up technician taken with the iPhone X camera standing in the driveway of a home where just the frame of the garage door remains standing.

Dolls heads, arms, and legs
10 of 21 James Martin/CNET

Dolls heads, arms and legs collected from the ashen rubble of a home in the Coffey Park neighborhood of Santa Rosa, California.

Nuns Fire Santa Rosa, California on assignment iPhone X
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A charred truck parked in street in Coffey Park.

Nuns Fire Santa Rosa, California on assignment iPhone X
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In this iPhone X Portrait Mode image, an EPA crew member gives a double thumbs up during clean-up operations in Santa Rosa, California, on Wednesday November 1, 2017.

Tubbs Fire Santa Rosa, California on assignment iPhone X
13 of 21 James Martin/CNET

Standing in the remains of her home, a woman in her 40s wearing a red shirt wields a wood-framed wire-mesh screen to sift through piles of fluffy gray ash and twisted metal. 

Tubbs Fire Santa Rosa, California on assignment iPhone X
14 of 21 James Martin/CNET

EPA crews have around 6,200 parcels of land to clear of household hazardous waste to clear. 

Tubbs Fire Santa Rosa, California on assignment iPhone X
15 of 21 James Martin/CNET

On many of the properties, the only remains visible are brick chimneys, gas grills, washers and driers, and vehicles.

Tubbs Fire Santa Rosa, California on assignment iPhone X
16 of 21 James Martin/CNET

The fires destroyed nearly everything, including everyday household items that are now toxic ash. That includes remnants of paint, propane, pesticides, plastics, fertilizers, gasoline and other chemicals that must now be removed.

Nuns Fire Santa Rosa, California on assignment iPhone X
17 of 21 James Martin/CNET

A Portrait Mode image taken with iPhone X of an EPA crew member in white protective suit, hard hat, and respirator.

A burned out car in Coffey Park, Santa Rosa.
18 of 21 James Martin/CNET

A burned out car in Coffey Park, Santa Rosa.

EPA Santa Rosa, California on assignment iPhone X
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Once the EPA has surveyed a property and cleared any hazardous materials, this certified 'complete' sign is posted out front. This image was shot in Portrait Mode and edited on an iPhone X.

Nuns Fire Santa Rosa, California on assignment iPhone X
20 of 21 James Martin/CNET

An American flag hangs between the brick remains of a driveway gate in Santa Rosa, California where the Tubbs Fire destroyed thousands of structures in October 2017.

Nuns Fire Santa Rosa, California on assignment iPhone X
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A charred statue of Buddha sits peacefully in the Coffey Park neighborhood of Santa Roan sa, California. Photo taken in Portrait Mode on iPhone X.

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