It is extremely rare for people who are very well prepared and practiced to die defending their homes.
The perception that people died in the Black Saturday bushfires because they ‘stayed’, that is: defended or sheltered in their homes, is wrong.
There is no evidence from the Royal Commission into the 2009 bushfires that anyone who followed proper safe practice died.
Media and official statements that nearly a quarter of the fatalities died because they tried to defend their home are a misinterpretation of the research.
A group of eminent bushfire scientists who conducted research into contributing factors found that very few of those who died had a well thought out fire plan.
In fact, only 6.8% who died on Black Saturday were considered to be ‘well prepared’. And in the context of the research, ‘well prepared’ meant – had they done anything before 1.30 pm on the day!
Essential Bushfire Safety Tips 3rd edition gives all the research data.