100 Safest Cities in America 2018
See how your city ranks for safety compared to the rest of the nation.
Whether you’re choosing a city to settle down in, applying to colleges, or planning a vacation, safety is a top concern. With your well-being in mind, we’ve analyzed the most recent FBI crime report and put together this resource, which not only lists the 100 safest cities in America but also provides insight into crime trends across the nation.
Is Crime Less Prevalent Than It Was 20 Years Ago?
On average, 3.86 violent crimes and 24.50 property crimes were reported per 1,000 people in the US during 2016. Although the rate of violent crime increased 3.4% from 2015 to 2016, violent crime rates have decreased substantially over the last two decades. For example, in 1997 approximately six violent crimes were reported for every 1,000 people. The reports of property crime have also drastically declined, with 11.5 million reported in 1997 and 7.9 million reported in 2016.
Which Region of the US Is the Safest?
Some areas of the country experienced much less criminal activity than the national average. Analyzing the FBI report, we discovered the crime rate among northeastern states was approximately 30% less than the national average. It’s fitting then that almost half of the cities on our list are in Connecticut, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, or Massachusetts—all northeastern states.
The Midwest also reported lower crime rates than the US average, and several cities in North Dakota, Michigan, Wisconsin, and Ohio are among the 100 Safest Cities in America. In fact, midwestern cities account for six of America’s top ten safest cities. But you don’t have to live in the Northeast or the Midwest to benefit from a low-crime environment. Safe communities are found in every part of the country—from fortieth-ranked Dumfries, Virginia, to eighty-first-ranked Windsor, Colorado, and beyond.
How Safe Are the 100 Safest Cities in the US?
While no community is immune to crime, the cities on our list experienced exceptionally low crime rates. On average, the 100 Safest Cities in America reported a mere eight property crimes for every 1,000 people—that’s 67% less than the national property crime rate. Violent crimes were even less common, with over half the cities citing zero crimes of this type.
Many of the nation’s safest cities are relatively small, but several much more populated cities like Monroe Township, New Jersey, and Franklin, Massachusetts, also made our list. Whether you live in a quaint rural town or a bustling city, we encourage you to make safety a priority. Explore the SafeWise website for numerous home safety resources, important safety news, and helpful home security system reviews.
Lewisboro, New York
Congratulations to the citizens, leaders, and law enforcement officers of the Safest City in America: Lewisboro, New York. Their collaborative approach to crime fighting is commendable and helps keep Lewisboro a safe place to live, work, and play. With no reports of violent crime and only two property crimes, it’s not surprising this charming Westchester County city tops our 100 Safest Cities in America list for the third consecutive year. Way to go, Lewisboro!
Hazen, North Dakota
Impromptu excursions to Lake Sakakawea are just one benefit of calling Hazen, North Dakota home. Another is sleeping easy at night knowing you live in the second safest city in the US. We applaud the Hazen Police Department for their crime-fighting efforts and the way they use social media to communicate with Hazenites about everything from dangerous road conditions and lost pets to safety tips and upcoming events. Kudos to Hazen for making its first appearance on our 100 Safest Cities in America list—keep up the good work.
Thetford Township, Michigan
With no reported violent crimes and a property crime rate 95% lower than the nation as a whole, Thetford Police Chief, Robert Kenny, has a lot to be proud of. We’re certainly impressed with the way this Genesee County town keeps crime at bay, but we also love the way it cares for older citizens. The Thetford Township Senior Center offers numerous low and no-cost services to help meet the needs of these community members.
A remarkable safety record could be one reason the population of Freedom, Wisconsin is on the rise. Like many cities on our list, Freedom cited no violent crimes in 2016. Its property crime rate was also far below the national average, with just nine crimes of this type reported. But crime isn’t the only thing that can jeopardize a community; prescription drugs are also potentially dangerous. We send a shout-out to Freedom for sponsoring Drug Take Back Day, which allows citizens to safely dispose of unused or expired prescription medications.
Beaver Dam Township, Wisconsin
The fifth safest city in the US is small in size but big on ambiance. A quintessential midwestern town, Beaver Dam is characterized by friendly folks, beautiful scenery, and family-run businesses. It’s the kind of place where neighbors look out for one another, which is one likely reason this Dodge County community recorded a mere six property crimes—most of which were thefts. Thinking of relocating to Wisconsin? Put Beaver Dam at the top of your list.
Chester Township, Ohio
Columbus may be Ohio’s capital, but we’re saluting Chester Township. Since last year, this safety-conscious community moved up twenty-two places on our 100 Safest Cities in America list. Reporting no violent crimes and fewer than two property crimes for every 1,000 people, Chester Township is 97% safer than the average Ohio city. Need another reason to pack your bags for this beautiful Buckeye State community? It goes the extra mile to take care of its youngest citizens through programs like Safety Township, which helps teach kindergarteners about safety and security.
River Vale Township, New Jersey
Over a dozen of the 100 Safest Cities in America have New Jersey zip codes, but River Vale Township is the safest of them all. Located just twenty miles from New York City, this tree-lined community is known for its quiet neighborhoods, abundant recreation, and excellent schools. Up one ranking from last year, River Vale Township reported just twenty-six property crimes and zero violent crimes. Along with its brag-worthy crime record, we applaud River Vale’s email and text alert system, which keeps citizens in the loop about important public safety and security issues.
Elko New Market, Minnesota
Eighth-ranked Elko New Market is one of the fastest growing cities in Minnesota, but that hasn’t increased crime. In fact, the overall crime rate decreased 15% from 2015 to 2016, and the city’s violent crime rate is the lowest it’s been in six years. We think the Elko New Market Police Department’s community-values-based philosophy, which focuses on crime prevention and embraces collaborative problem solving, has a lot to do with the city’s stellar safety record. Bravo, Elko New Market—we hope to see you on our list again next year.
Briarcliff Manor Village, New York
Brick sidewalks, period street lighting, and beautifully restored homes are commonplace in America’s ninth safest city: Briarcliff Manor Village, New York. And as far as safety goes, this charming Hudson River community offers peace of mind too. Reporting just twenty-three property crimes, Briarcliff Manor is 95% safer than the average US city. Just like safety, the village is big on communication. A text alert system, government television channel, and monthly newsletter all help keep residents up to speed on community happenings.
Whitestown, New York
If you’re a nature lover, you’re sure to fall for Whitestown, New York. Situated in Oneida County, Whitestown is surrounded by vast undeveloped spaces that characterize much of the Empire State. Whitestown also appeals to history buffs, as the Battle of Oriskany (one of the bloodiest battles of the American Revolution) took place nearby. And of course, we can’t overlook this town’s exemplary crime record. With no reported violent crimes and only twenty-seven property crimes, Whitestown is the tenth-safest city in the US and the third-safest in New York.
Carrington, North Dakota
Carrington, North Dakota is known for being the county seat of Foster County, but it also deserves praise for its nominal crime record. Citing zero violent crimes and just seven property crimes, this close-knit community is the second-safest city in North Dakota and the eleventh-safest in the nation. In addition to their town’s almost nonexistent crime, Mayor Neil Fandrich and all Carrington locals can be proud of their commitment to kids. Schools offer small class sizes and boast a 94% graduation rate, while numerous sport complexes and a Youth Center help keep kids active and engaged outside school hours. With all Carrington has going for it, we expect to see this city on our list again next year.
Bernards Township, New Jersey
The second-safest community in the Garden State is also one of the nation’s safest cities to call home. Rising nine places from last year’s twenty-first ranking to this year’s twelfth is certainly an accomplishment. But the fact that Bernards Township—with over 27,000 residents—reported not one violent crime and fewer than 100 property crimes is nothing short of brag-worthy. While police keep crime under control, the township’s Green Team is busy mapping community assets like bike paths and researching environmentally friendly initiatives—both of which help ensure the beauty of Bernards Township for generations to come.
Here’s another safe city that puts kids at the top of their priority list. Despite an influx of students over the last several years, the Greenbrier School District remains one of the best in all of Arkansas. When they’re not in school, kids have plenty of activities to keep them busy and out of harm’s way. And more choices are coming with the opening of the much-anticipated Matthews Park—a community-centered space with plans to include a splash pad, skate park, and climbing wall. Congratulations to Greenbrier for making its first appearance on our list.
Stillwater Town, New York
If there’s one crime that doesn’t get enough press, it’s domestic abuse—but that’s not the case in fourteenth-ranked Stillwater Town, New York. Bravo to the Stillwater Police Department for shedding light on this destructive crime—and for collecting over 5,000 cellphones to distribute to victims in need. It’s progressive programs like this that help bring community members together and help all citizens enjoy a higher quality of life. Way to go, Stillwater!
Raisin Township, Michigan
There’s a lot to “like” about Raisin Township, Michigan—starting with the way this community uses social media to help keep citizens safe and informed. Another perk of calling this town in the Great Lakes State home? The peace of mind that comes with knowing you live in the fifteenth-ranked safest city in America. Reporting a nominal twenty-one thefts, six burglaries, and no violent crimes at all, Raisin Township experienced less than four crimes per 1,000 people in 2016—that’s 84% less than the national average. Raisin Township, you’ve caught our attention!
|Rank||City||Population||Violent Crime (per 1,000)||Property Crime (per 1,000)|
|16||Croton-on-Hudson Village, New York||8,308||0.00||3.73|
|17||Brandon, South Dakota||10,042||0.00||3.78|
|18||West Liberty, Kentucky||3,336||0.00||4.20|
|20||New London, New Hampshire||4,678||0.00||4.70|
|23||Eden Town, New York||7,670||0.00||5.61|
|26||Merrimack, New Hampshire||25,675||0.00||7.44|
|27||Fox Point, Wisconsin||6,754||0.00||7.85|
|29||Hopkinton, New Hampshire||5,614||0.00||8.02|
|31||Summerset, South Dakota||2,329||0.00||8.59|
|33||Belle Meade, Tennessee||3,021||0.00||10.26|
|36||Mission Hills, Kansas||3,621||0.00||11.32|
|38||Indian Hills, Kentucky||2,977||0.00||13.77|
|41||Horseheads Village, New York||6,653||0.00||15.33|
|42||Sauk Prairie, Wisconsin||4,640||0.00||15.73|
|44||Carl Junction, Missouri||7,780||0.00||16.32|
|45||Nichols Hills, Oklahoma||3,921||0.00||16.83|
|46||North Sioux City, South Dakota||2,772||0.00||18.76|
|47||Dawson Springs, Kentucky||2,732||0.00||22.33|
|48||Isle of Palms, South Carolina||4,419||0.00||26.70|
|53||Harrison Town, New York||28,518||0.04||4.42|
|55||Rye, New York||16,108||0.00||3.85|
|56||Warren Township, New Jersey||16,051||0.06||3.43|
|57||Highland Park, New Jersey||14,346||0.07||12.48|
|58||Berkeley Heights Township, New Jersey||13,548||0.07||6.57|
|59||Olmsted Township, Ohio||13,228||0.08||3.25|
|60||Clinton Township, New Jersey||12,933||0.08||3.25|
|62||New Providence, New Jersey||12,461||0.08||4.49|
|63||North Castle Town, New York||12,390||0.08||6.21|
|64||Glen Rock, New Jersey||12,014||0.08||6.16|
|65||Raritan Township, New Jersey||22,011||0.09||5.09|
|66||Sparta Township, New Jersey||19,049||0.10||4.09|
|70||New Castle Town, New York||18,167||0.11||3.08|
|71||Monroe Township, Middlesex County, New Jersey||44,923||0.11||3.61|
|72||Marco Island, Florida||17,947||0.11||5.24|
|74||New Milford, New Jersey||16,804||0.12||2.44|
|75||Highland Heights, Ohio||8,402||0.12||11.78|
|76||Pleasant Hill, Missouri||8,320||0.12||15.26|
|77||Highlands Town, New York||8,237||0.12||1.21|
|78||Fort Thomas, Kentucky||16,436||0.12||5.48|
|79||Baldwinsville Village, New York||7,805||0.13||11.66|
|80||Kinross Township, Michigan||7,536||0.13||1.73|
|82||Grand Rapids, Wisconsin||7,466||0.13||9.91|
|85||Lone Peak, Utah||28,862||0.14||6.24|
|86||Pleasantville Village, New York||7,205||0.00||9.72|
|88||Saddle Brook Township, New Jersey||14,108||0.14||17.72|
|89||East Aurora-Aurora Town, New York||13,832||0.14||8.54|
|90||Mount Hope Town, New York||6,899||0.14||2.32|
|92||Carmel Town, New York||34,355||0.15||3.11|
|93||Walden Village, New York||6,810||0.15||11.60|
|94||Tuckahoe Village, New York||6,673||0.15||7.34|
|95||Cherry Hills Village, Colorado||6,673||0.15||10.38|
|96||Mahwah Township, New Jersey||26,588||0.15||5.64|
|97||Kent Town, New York||13,274||0.15||4.14|
|99||Key Biscayne, Florida||13,113||0.15||11.82|
|100||South Windsor, Connecticut||25,803||0.16||13.76|
Want Your City to Make Our List?
It’s truly our pleasure to spotlight the Safest Cities in America. We never stop beaming while reading what inventive, holistic, and successful safety programs towns come up with to keep residents, the environment, and animals safe. We hope you enjoyed reading about the 2018 Safest Cities in America and work with your own government and townspeople so your city can appear on our list next year!
How We Chose the Safest Cities in America
To identify the 100 safest cities in the US, we reviewed the 2016 FBI crime report statistics and population data. Cities that fell below identified population thresholds or that failed to submit a complete crime report to the FBI were excluded from the ranking system.
Our evaluation is based on the number of reported violent crimes (aggravated assault, murder, rape, and robbery) in each city. If there was a tie, we also factored in the number of property crimes (burglary, arson, larceny-theft, and motor vehicle theft). To level the playing field, we calculated the rate of crimes per 1,000 people in each city. This makes it easier to directly compare the likelihood of these crimes occurring in cities with vastly different populations. Learn more about how we rank our Safest Cities reports.
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