Santa Clarita ranks on multiple ‘safest cities in America’ lists

The Taylor Trail. Photo courtesy of the city of Santa Clarita.
Signal file photo.

Safety is historically a top priority for people who are looking for a place to call their home. On multiple lists ranking the safest cities in America, Santa Clarita is a city that has secured a spot for numerous years.  

2023 is no different, with Santa Clarita landing on the “safest city” lists of MoneyGeek, SmartAssest and WalletHub.  

“It’s really a team effort here,” Capt. Justin Diez of the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station said in a previous interview about the 2022 lists. “It’s not just law enforcement. It’s our city officials. It’s our county officials. It’s law enforcement. It’s all our nonprofits out here. It’s our community-based groups. Santa Clarita is not the type of town that just sits back and lets things happen. I think that our town is an unbelievable example of grassroots efforts on all fronts.” 

Where a city ranks on a particular list can be impacted by the methodology used to compile the list.  

For example, placed Santa Clarita at the No. 20 spot among safest cities in America.  

According to its website, this conclusion was determined by, “the most recent crime statistics from the Federal Bureau of Investigation to estimate the cost of crime in 263 cities with populations greater than 100,000 across the United States. The analysis pairs reported crime statistics with academic research on the societal costs of different types of crimes to estimate the cost of crime for each city.” 

The data points presented were defined as follows: Crime cost per capita (societal cost of crime per resident), violent crime rate (composed of murder and nonnegligent manslaughter, rape, robbery and aggravated assault per 100,000 residents), property crime rate (includes burglary, larceny-theft, motor vehicle theft and arson per 100,000 residents) and cost of crime (economic losses attributed to crime and its cost to society in millions).  

Santa Clarita’s crime cost per capita was found to be $359 with a 156 violent crime rate. The property crime rate was reported to be 1,095 with $80,694 as the overall cost of crime.  

In 2022, Santa Clarita held the No. 17 spot on that list.  

Santa Clarita’s highest ranking for safety this year came from, putting the city in the No. 4 spot.  

In SmartAssest’s research, the website stated it utilized data from 200 of the largest U.S. cities across the five metrics of violent crime, property crime, vehicular mortality rate, drug poisoning mortality rate and the percentage of the population engaging in excessive drinking.  

Santa Clarita has taken a spot on this list for the past three years. In 2022 the city was also in the No. 4 spot.  

“Santa Clarita has the eighth-lowest property crime rate across our study (988 for every 100,000 residents) and the 11th-lowest violent crime rate (131 for every 100,000 residents),” wrote “And just over 17% of the population in Los Angeles County, where Santa Clarita is located, engage in excessive drinking (35th).” 

The lowest ranking Santa Clarita received was by WalletHub, placing the city as the No. 59 safest city in America.  

“In order to determine the safest cities in which to live, WalletHub compared 182 cities — including the 150 most populated U.S. cities, plus at least two of the most populated cities in each state — across three key dimensions: 1) Home & Community Safety, 2) Natural-Disaster Risk, and 3) Financial Safety,” wrote “We evaluated those dimensions using 41 relevant metrics, which are listed below with their corresponding weights. Each metric was graded on a 100-point scale, with a score of 100 representing the highest level of safety. 

“We then determined each city’s weighted average across all metrics to calculate its overall score and used the resulting scores to rank-order our sample. In determining our sample, we considered only the city proper in each case, excluding cities in the surrounding metro area.” 

Santa Clarita’s total WalletHub score was 77.37, ranking third in home and community safety, 168th in natural disaster risk and 171st in financial safety.  

“The city of Santa Clarita regularly ranks as one of the safest cities in our nation,” said Carrie Lujan, communications manager for the city of Santa Clarita. “This recent survey once again demonstrates that — with our city ranking third safest in the nation in the category of ‘Home and Community Safety.’ This particular survey also factored in ‘Natural Disasters’ as a category. It is not surprising that we were ranked lower in that category due to our landscape and the natural wildfire risk in our valley.” 

Additionally, Santa Clarita ranked fifth in fewest traffic fatalities per capita. 

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