In 2006 Risk and Insurance published their list of this country's 10 safest cities. This study isn't about personal safety or crime. It's about evaluating the propensity of cities to have catastrophic events. A catastrophe-modeling firm, provided the analysis to assist companies in assessing risks when evaluating choices for establishing or relocating a business. One of the factors in a such a decision is the mitigation of the risk that a catastrophe will affect the business.
The perils that are included in the analysis of the safest cities in the United States are hurricanes, earthquakes, severe thunderstorms, terrorism, winter storms and wildfires. Metropolitan areas with populations of greater than 1 million people were included in the study.
According to the Greater Phoenix Economic Council, Phoenix came in so high on the list "due to its distance from the Atlantic and Gulf coasts, which allows for protection from hurricanes. In addition, the region rarely experiences major earthquake and tremor activity, with no deaths or injuries from earthquakes occurring in Arizona in the last century." While Arizona experiences some severe wildfires in the forested area of the state, the City of Phoenix is not considered at risk for that kind of event.
As far as terrorism is concerned, the risk in Phoenix was deemed low, even though Sky Harbor International Airport is one of the busiest in the country and Palo Verde Nuclear Generation Station is about 50 miles away.
One of the reasons that large call centers and operations centers consider Phoenix as a location for their business is exactly this safety aspect. Having an environment for data and operations that is not likely to be negatively impacted by calamity is critically important to many companies.
The diminished likelihood of natural disasters not only is attractive to corporations, but also draws families to the Valley of the Sun. Yes, the summers are very hot and can be dangerous, but you can plan for that. Floods, hurricanes, tsunamis, and earthquakes -- those are events that many people just don't want to deal with any more.
10 Safest Cities in America 2006These were the cities deemed safest, relative to natural disasters, for U.S. Metro Statistical Areas with at least 1 million inhabitants.
- Rochester, New York
- Phoenix, Arizona
- Columbus, Ohio
- Buffalo, New York
- Cincinnati, Ohio
- Grand Rapids, Michigan
- Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
- Hartford, Connecticut
- Greenville, South Carolina
- Detroit, Michigan