The cat and dogs are pretty much the only thing my sister got out of our house that night, and even then she cut it unsafely close trying to find the cat (it had been hiding under the bed since the wind kicked up) and had to literally drive through flames at the end of the street. It was lucky that she was able to save them both, and even luckier that she wasn’t injured or killed trying to do so.
It’s hard for people who weren’t there to know what it was like. These were neighborhoods that had been safe and defensible for the entirety of the decades since they were built, and they were burning before anyone was even aware of what was going on. My neighborhood didn’t even get so much as a warning before the houses at the end of the street were engulfed and embers were being blown further down at 30+ mph. Anyone who says that people should’ve been able to save more or done better is completely moronic.