A wine country neighborhood was leveled by the fires ravaging California — here are the photos

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Getty Images

An entire neighborhood in Santa Rosa, California, was leveled after a massive wildfire incinerated swaths of wine country early this week.

Nearly two dozen fires, whipped by powerful winds, blew through Napa, Sonoma, and elsewhere on Monday morning. The blaze torched at least 3,500 homes, businesses, and other structures. The situation is being called one of the deadliest firestorms in state history.

Santa Rosa was among the cities hit the hardest. The neighborhood of Coffey Park – a small, close-knit community made up of single-family homes – has been reduced to rubble.

Thse photos show the scale of the destruction.


Here’s what Coffey Park looks like on Google Earth.

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Google Earth

An aerial photo taken on Monday shows the devastation left behind.

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California Highway Patrol/Golden Gate Division via Reuters

As the hot zones cool and smoke clears, residents have begun to return to Coffey Park.


“It looks like a bomb went off,” said one resident. “A nuke bomb,” added her husband.

Source: New York Times


Coffey Park has been described as a “little slice of the American dream,” where a vibrant mix of Latinos, Vietnamese, Filipinos, Indians, and white people lived in modest homes.


Their quiet corner of wine country was consumed by chaos in the early hours of Monday.


Two of the largest fires — the Tubbs and Atlas fires — are believed to have begun near Highway 128 in Napa. Strong, dry winds fanned the flames from ridge top to ridge top overnight.


Police cars came through Coffey Park around 1:30 a.m on Monday., telling people to clear out over the loudspeaker. “We had a half-hour to pack everything,” a resident told the New York Times.

Source: New York Times


After the Tubbs fire passed through, Coffey Park was gone.

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Getty Images

Aerial photos taken in the days after the fire show hundreds of homes turned to rubble.


From above, you can make out the erratic nature of the burn. In a cul-de-sac, homes on one side of the street were charred in the flames, but a colorful few appeared to be unscathed.

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Getty Images

Coffey Park, which gives the neighborhood its name, was also untouched.


Satellite images provide a different view. DigitalGlobe, a satellite-imaging company, released some of the first close-up views of the disaster from orbit. Here’s Santa Rosa.

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Copyright DigitalGlobe

The company took these images early this week with its WorldView-3 and GeoEye-1 satellites.

“Some of these are natural color, while others are shown in the Very Near Infrared (VNIR), where burned areas appear gray and black and healthy vegetation is red,” DigitalGlobe told Business Insider’s Dave Mosher in an emailed statement.


All of the gray regions are burned homes, while red shows relatively unscathed plots of land.

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Copyright DigitalGlobe

Satellite photos reveal the California wildfire’s shocking damage from space »


Lisa Layman, who lived in Coffey Park for more than 20 years, couldn’t recognize her home when she returned Tuesday. “It all just looked like junk,” Layman told the Times.

Source: New York Times


“A few hours ago, we had a house,” fellow resident Chavette Chaney told the San Francisco Chronicle. She clutched her husband’s arm and cried in their blackened driveway.


About 8,000 people lived in Coffey Park and a neighboring subdivision.

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Getty Images

Source: San Francisco Chronicle


Tammy Christiansen searched the remains of her home and found a glimmer of hope.


Her wedding ring, along with her son’s wrestling trophy, had survived the blaze.


Luke Baier salvaged a block of concrete that he and his brothers left their handprints on as children. There was little else left of his house.


Even the aluminum wheels on cars melted and ran like rivers of mercury down driveways.


An estimated 3,500 homes and business were destroyed in the fires. Local officials and residents won’t know the full extent of the damage until evacuation orders are lifted.


The fate of Coffey Park and its residents is unknown.

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Getty Images