These Are The 10 Safest Cities In Iowa
We used data and science to determine the places in Iowa where everyone sleeps safe and sound.
We all want the finer things in life. Love, comfort and safety are at the top of everyone's list. For a lot of people who live in the fine state of Iowa, safety isn't a problem, but we don't live in the safest state, either. Iowa is somewhere in the middle.
The purpose of this post is to determine where the safest places to live are in the Hawkeye State. Those places where crime is usually something you hear about on Facebook, but not in your local paper.
After analyzing 74 places in Iowa with a population of more than 5,000, we came up with this list as the safest places here:
Read on below to see how we crunched the numbers and how your town ranked.
How we calculated the safest cities in Iowa
While there are surveys and public polls on what cities in a state are the safest, we didn't want to rely on speculation and opinion. Instead, we looked at the hard numbers from the FBI's most recent report of crime (2014). Specifically, we analyzed the FBI's Uniform Crime Report which summarizes the number of property crimes and violent crimes in each city per year. We used three criteria:
- Violent crimes per capita (murders, assaults, rapes, armed robberies)
- Property crimes per capita (thefts, burglaries, motor vehicle thefts)
- Total crimes per capita
For example, there were a total of 15 crimes committed in Orange City which had a reported population of 6,211. That means the number of crimes per capita is 0.00242 which translates into a 1 in 414 chance of being the victim of a crime.
We only looked at cities that have populations of more than 5,000 people reported to the FBI in 2014. This left us with a total of 74 places in Iowa to rank.
We ranked each place for each criteria from 1 to 74 where 1 in any particular category is the safest.
Next, we averaged each places three criteria to create a Safety Index. We crowned the place with the lowest overall Safety Score "The Safest Place In Iowa".
The safest city, based on population, is Orange City. The most dangerous? Fort Dodge, where residents had a 1 in 109 chance of being the victim of a crime.
Note: This report is not an analysis of the effectiveness of local police departments, nor does it reflect the fact that people from out of town may come into a community and cause a crime. It simply looks at where crimes occurred most frequently, based on a city's population.
1. Orange City
Population: 6,211Property Crime Rank: 9Violent Crime Rank: 6
Population: 5,970Property Crime Rank: 12Violent Crime Rank: 12
Population: 9,797Property Crime Rank: 23Violent Crime Rank: 4
Population: 6,126Property Crime Rank: 4Violent Crime Rank: 39
Population: 17,952Property Crime Rank: 16Violent Crime Rank: 17
Population: 5,051Property Crime Rank: 24Violent Crime Rank: 7
Population: 20,435Property Crime Rank: 19Violent Crime Rank: 19
Population: 8,079Property Crime Rank: 38Violent Crime Rank: 5
9. Pleasant Hill
Population: 9,149Property Crime Rank: 29Violent Crime Rank: 26
Population: 5,163Property Crime Rank: 36Violent Crime Rank: 16
There You Have It
Looking at the data, you can tell that anything within a 15-minute drive of Orange City is the most desirable, according to science and data. But as most Iowa residents would agree, almost every place here is awesome.Most dangerous cities in Iowa:3rd Most Dangerous: Keokuk 2nd Most Dangerous: Clinton Most Dangerous: Fort Dodge