The 10 Safest U.S. Cities for Natural Disasters


Given the sheer size of the United States, it should come as no surprise to learn that there are a lot of U.S. cities that face a fair amount of risk for natural disasters of one kind or another on a regular basis. For example, the states situated along the Gulf of Mexico as well as the Atlantic Ocean are at-risk for hurricanes, though some of them tend to be much more at-risk than others. In contrast, much of the United States’s west coast is at-risk for earthquakes as well as the consequences that come with earthquakes because it is part of the so-called Ring of Fire in the Pacific Ocean. Considering the amount of damage that natural disasters can inflict with shocking ease, it is no coincidence that a lot of Americans factor them into their decision about where to live.

Based on Trulia’s earthquake, hurricane, and tornado data, here are the 10 safest U.S. cities for natural disasters:

10. Warren-Troy-Farmington Hills, MI

For people who are unfamiliar with these three names, Warren-Troy-Farmington Hills refer to a collection of suburbs situated in the northwest edge of the Detroit metropolitan area. While the region experiences severe storms from time to time, these suburbs have remained free from natural disasters over the course of their existence, which suggests that their chances of experiencing such incidents are low. However, they are also a great reminder that natural disasters should not be the sole factor in choosing a place to live, seeing as how the Detroit metropolitan area has a number of serious problems at the moment that will not be solved sometime soon.

9. Denver, CO

Denver is based in a region that experiences wildfires from time to time, which is a serious problem that promises to become even worse as climate change continues to change the conditions on the ground. However, it is important to note that said wildfires have never reached Denver, though one of them managed to shroud it in smoke for a short period of time. Otherwise, the city remains free from natural disasters.

8. Chicago, IL

Most of the time, Chicago is safe from natural disasters, but it has been known to experience severe snowstorms from time to time. For example, one such storm on Groundhog’s Day in 2011 managed to bring the entire city grinding to a halt because the weather was bad enough that cars couldn’t head out. With that said, while severe snowstorms are a serious issue, they tend to be easier to prepare for than other natural disasters such as earthquakes, hurricanes, and tornadoes.

7. Allentown, PA

Allentown is not as well-known as most of the other names on this list, but it should be noted that it is the third largest city in the state of Pennsylvania. Its residents prepare themselves for the effects of hurricanes moving inland on an annual basis, but so far, it has managed to avoid taking serious damages from such incidents.

6. Dayton, OH

The city of Dayton can seem like a strange choice for inclusion on this list considering that it suffered the single most serious flood in the state of Ohio in 1913 based on the amount of damage as well as the number of lives lost in the event. However, it is important to note that it took serious steps to prevent a re-occurrence in the future, which is why while the city has experienced the same kind of bad weather that contributed to the flood on numerous occasions in the time since, it has remained untouched.

5. Bethesda-Rockville-Frederick, MD

Together, Bethesda-Rockville-Frederick makes up a significant portion of the Baltimore-Washington metropolitan area. Given its location close to the East Coast, it should come as no surprise to learn that the region has non-zero chances of experiencing hurricanes. However, the chances of a serious hurricane fall north of Cape Hatteras and west of the Chesapeake Bay, meaning that its chances of sustaining serious damage from such an incident are small at most.

4. Buffalo, NY

Buffalo in the state of New York faces two kinds of natural disasters. First, it faces flood, though much less so than most of the cities that can be found throughout the United States. Second, it faces severe snowstorms, but so far, it has not experienced something serious enough to cause significant damage to either its businesses or its residents. As a result, while the city is not free from the fear of natural disasters, it is nonetheless one of the safest cities in the entire country in that regard.

3. Akron, OH

Like Buffalo, the city of Akron in the state of Ohio is known to experience floods from time to time whenever a particularly serious storm hits. However, this should not be counted against Akron for the simple reason that most cities can experience flooding from time to time with particularly serious storms, though some of them experience such incidents much less often than the others. Like the rest of the places included on this list, Akron is one of these less flood-prone places to live, though it should be noted that it also experienced a tornado back in 1943.

2. Cleveland, OH

The city of Cleveland has never experienced a natural disaster. Instead, the worst that it has ever seen consisted of minor damage from wind and rain, which is once again, something that can happen in most cities in the United States. As a result, Cleveland has earned its place as one of the safest cities in the United States, which is something that promises to last into the future.

1. Syracuse, NY

Syracuse is one of the cities that can be found in upstate New York. Its particular part of the state is known for its lack of fires, earthquakes, hurricanes, and tornadoes, meaning that its residents have no need to fear in that regard. Said region does see some flooding from time to time, but so little of it that it has managed to beat out all of the other places included on this list. Something that should reassure cautious people who want to live in a place where they can expect to remain safe and sound from the wrath of nature.


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