California has just about everything. It’s the most populous state for a reason. The weather is great, attracting millions of Americans and expats. It’s also the home of entertainment, with Los Angeles boasting world-famous destinations like Hollywood, Santa Monica, and Malibu.
The Golden State is undoubtedly a great place to call home but is it safe?
Safety comes in various forms, and if you plan on relocating to a massive state like California, you would need to consider some of the hardships that may accompany the move.
Here are ways to ensure you stay safe when living in California.
Traffic Accidents in California
Considering California’s population, it’s not surprising that its traffic accident statistics are off the charts. According to the 2020 SWITRS report, there were over 147,000 traffic accidents, which was a decrease from the previous year.
Furthermore, over 8,000 traffic accidents were reported in each county in 2020.
Some of the leading reasons for accidents on California roadways are:
- Driving under the influence
- Distracted driving
- Road rage
Tips to Stay Safe on California Roads
Here are things you can do to stay safe on California highways and city streets:
- Follow Traffic Rules
Considering the traffic snarls on the roadways leading in and outside big cities like LA, maintaining traffic rules should be a priority.
If possible, try to avoid the routes around popular places as they are the most frequented and prone to crashes. Cities like San Jose, San Diego, and Beverly Hills have high numbers of motor vehicle accidents.
It’s worth taking extra care when visiting such places. If you do get into a crash, you should consider legal help.
- Avoid Confrontations
The hours spent in traffic on some California highways make a lot of people aggressive. You’ll come across drivers who behave recklessly. They would be speeding, driving distracted, making dangerous passes, and hurling insults at other motorists.
It’s crucial that you respond to these aggressive motorists by driving defensively and avoiding any confrontation that may escalate the situation.
- Involve the Authorities
Living where unsafe driving behavior is common means you’ll sometimes have to involve law enforcement when caught up in a hazardous situation.
Things like another motorist getting offended over how you drive and resorting to aggressive tactics is something you may want to report.
Sometimes letting someone get away with a dangerous habit contributes to keeping the roads unsafe.
The Crime Rate in California
The crime rate in California is pretty high. There are many reasons why that is the case. The population and diversity are contributing factors, but so are factors like gang activity, economic issues, celebrity presence, drug abuse, etc.
With about a million property crimes a year and about 150,000 violent crimes, it’s important to take measures to improve your security.
Here are steps you can take to maintain safety wherever you are in the state:
- Avoid Dangerous Cities
Crime rates vary in California depending on where you live. Some cities are more violent than others. You may want to do some research when choosing where to live to avoid crime-prone places.
Some of the California cities known for their high crime rates include San Bernardino, Madera, Santa Cruz, and Compton.
There are better places you can live, such as Pasadena, La Mesa, and Downey. You can find crime info through state public records.
- Be Careful on Visits
When visiting unsafe neighborhoods, it’s crucial to stay alert. You may be surprised how crime-prone some areas are, even populated urban areas like downtown LA.
Realize that crime doesn’t just happen on deserted streets with filthy and dilapidated buildings.
- Keep Valuables Safe
Regardless of where you are in California, leaving your valuables in the open is a terrible idea.
Try not to attract unwanted attention to yourself and keep your valuables out of sight. Don’t leave money and other items in obvious places like your car’s glove box compartment.
When parking your car, look for secure lots and lock your car doors before walking away from it.
When you take safety measures, you’ll find it easy to maintain safety in California. Most places are fine, and if you don’t do something to compromise your security, you’ll be okay. Staying out of trouble in traffic is easy, too, when you stick to the rules.