Wednesday, November 15, 2017

St. Louis Is the Second Most Dangerous City in the U.S. (for Many, Many Reasons)

Posted By on Wed, Nov 15, 2017 at 8:30 AM

click to enlarge THEO WELLING
  • THEO WELLING
Another day, another list shoring up St. Louis' reputation as a crime-ridden hellhole. And so it is with another national list, released this very morning, that declares St. Louis the second most dangerous city in the whole damn country.

But before you roll your eyes and say you've heard it before, this latest roundup — a study commissioned by the finance site RewardExpert — doesn't just look at FBI crime statistics, and it just doesn't look at St. Louis city. A spokeswoman tells us that researchers crunched numbers for both St. Louis city and St. Louis County on eight different factors, including crime, vehicle fatalities, man-made environmental hazards, natural disasters and firearm availability.

And in that assessment, the only city that's more dangerous than St. Louis is Tulsa, Oklahoma. Apparently, we're not just No. 1 when it comes to murder (twenty times higher than the national average, sigh); we're also No. 1 when it comes to contaminated sites and toxic chemicals. Yay, team!

Per the study's authors,
Were we to consider safety to be synonymous with safety from crime, St. Louis would have taken first place hands-down, with a homicide rate of 57.7 per 100,000 (close to 20 times the national average of 3.4 per 100,000). St. Louis also takes first place for the number of EPA-designated contaminated sites and toxic chemical releases, both absolutely and relative to the city’s greatly diminished population. St. Louis is only slightly safer according to other measures, with a lower rate of losses due to natural disaster, and lower foreclosure and fatal drug overdose rates than most of the other cities on this list.
So basically, the only thing keeping us from the No. 1 ranking is that a) we don't have any risk of hurricanes or volcano eruptions and b) somehow, despite a major drug problem and some real housing issues, other cities' drug problems and housing issues are even worse. This, surely, is not the good news we've been waiting for.

Read the whole thing — and weep — at RewardExpert.

We welcome tips and feedback. Email the author at sarah.fenske@riverfronttimes.com


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