West Virginia has stunning outdoor views and activities as well as an abundance of history embedded throughout the state.
It is no surprise why people want to live and visit this beautiful state, with so much to offer its residents and tourists alike.
When it comes to safety, this state offers some of the safest cities in the U.S..
If you are wondering about the safety of West Virginia, here are 10 of the safest cities that you can rely on.
- 10 Safest Cities in West Virginia
- 5 Safety Tips for Traveling to West Virginia
- West Virginia Safety Overview
- Frequently Asked Questions
10 Safest Cities in West Virginia
Saint Albans is known for its profound history and railways.
The Coal River & Western Railway is known to be one of the busiest railways in the U.S. and, today has a population of over 10,000 people.
The crime rate for Saint Albans, West Virginia is around 73% – with around 25 crimes reported per 1000 people.
The safety index of Saint Albans was reported as .77 in 2019, making it one of the safest cities in West Virginia to live in or travel to.
This city is also reported as safer than 30% of all cities across America.
Weirton was founded in the mid-1700s and is now known as one of the largest Steel Producing cities.
The population has blossomed to over 17,000 in 2022.
With a crime rate of only 2 per 1,000 people, Weirton is a generally safe city for those who want to travel to or live here.
Over the years, Weirton, WV has kept a steady decrease in crime.
2016 saw a 7.35% decline, 2017 saw a 3.54% decline, and 2018 saw over a 56% decline.
Charles Town, West Virginia is known for its historic landmarks, like the John Brown’s trial courthouse.
Founded by Charles Washington, younger brother of George Washington, this town lies in another safe city in West Virginia.
The population of Charles Town is a little under 6,000 as of 2022.
With a crime rate of around 10 crimes per 1,000 residents, this West Virginian city is safer than 69% of other cities in the state.
This quiet and quaint town is pretty relaxed most of the time, offering a safe space for all that visit and live there.
Bridgeport is known for its history during the pre-American Revolutionary War.
Bridgeport, West Virginia was founded in the late 1700s, and incorporated in the late 1800s.
The population as of 2022 is over 9,000 – offering a still small-town feel to this safe city.
Over the years, this city has seen a decrease in the overall crime rate, with a violent crime rate of 2.2 and a property crime rate of 8.2 in 2022.
In 2020, the violent crime rate was 1.0 and the property crime rate was 23.4 – seeing a drastic decrease over the years.
A deeply-invested coal-mining area, Moundsville is known for industries such as glass, plastic, and other manufacturing.
Moundsville is along the Ohio River, offering plenty of stunning views.
The population of Moundsville of over 7,000 – with a crime rate of around 1 in 324 for violent crime and 1 in 86 for property crime.
The rate of violent crime in 2022 is 2.6, in 2021 3.5, and in 2020 2.0.
The rate for property crime in 2020 was 25.2, in 2021 was 12.4, and in 2022 is 11.0.
This data shows a drastic decrease throughout the years.
Oak Hill, West Virginia is known for its coal fields and for being the place where the country singer, Hank Williams, died in 1953.
The population lands at just a little over 7,000 as of 2022 – making it another quaint town of the West Virginian state.
Oak Hill is safer than 86% of other cities in the state, with a truly small overall crime rate.
Violent crime rates in 2020 landed at 1.6, with a decrease in the following years.
2021 had a violent crime rate of .6, with a current 2022 crime rate of .5.
The property crime rate in 2020 started at 17.8, 2021 at 1.7, and in 2022 at .9!
Morgantown is home to the famous West Virginia University.
This city is known for its music and nightlife, with a large population of over 30,000 people.
It is also the third-largest city in this West Virginia state.
Aside from its music scene and nightlife, Morgantown has a safety index of .4!
This city is in the 44th percentile of the safest cities in the U.S., with around 260 crimes per 100,000 people.
Although it is not necessarily the safest on the list, as far as larger cities go with plenty to do, this is definitely one of the safest options.
Fairmont is known for its nature parks like the Pricketts Fort State Park and Valley Falls State Park.
The population is over 18,000, with a safety index of .05.
Even though Fairmont has a larger population, the crime rate here is drastically low, making it one of the safest cities to live in West Virginia.
In 2018, the crime rate was around 340 per 100,000 persons, in 2017 the crime rate was around 301 per 100,000 persons, and in 2016 the crime rate was around 421 per 100,000 persons.
The crime rate definitely fluctuates in this city, but it is generally safe for everyone.
Martinsburg is best known for the Martinsburg Roundhouse, which was established in the mid-1800s.
It is also known for its stunning nature, art, and history.
The population of this West Virginian city is over 17,000 – making it another large yet safe city on our list.
The safety index of Martinsburg is -.39, with a crime rate of 315 per 100,000 persons.
This is the third safest city in West Virginia, alongside Weirton, Fairmont, Morgantown, and Saint Albans.
Martinsburg is also safer than 10% of U.S. cities.
Vienna, West Virginia is located along the Ohio River and is known for its abundance of nature parks and ample shopping.
There is Wolf Run State Park, Blue Rock State Park, Cedar Creek State Park, and North Bend State Park.
The population of this West Virginia state is a little over 9,000, with a safety index of .03.
The crime rate here is pretty low, with only a very few occasional crimes.
There are roughly 34.27 total crime rates per 1,000 persons, with violent crime coming at 1.13 and property crime coming in at 33.14.
5 Safety Tips for Traveling to West Virginia
Make Sure That You Have Travel Insurance
Travel insurance has recently grown rapidly in the past few years.
Make sure that you look up the best travel insurance that fits your travel plan and budget, and then enroll in it.
This is helpful for any unexpected illnesses or injuries, as well as any other minor inconveniences.
Research, Research, Research
Make sure you do your research before visiting a new location.
Learn about safety crimes, learn about the laws, and learn about the best places to stay.
This will help you avoid any dangerous situations like violent or property crimes.
It can also prevent you from getting lost.
Always Make an Emergency Plan and Have an Emergency Kit
Emergency kits and plans are vital for traveling!
There are plenty of checklists online to help with what exactly to put in a kit, but emergency plans really depend on the place and person.
Be sure that you are prepared in case anything goes awry.
Abide by Safety Tips at Any Venues
Whether it is music venues or other large spaces for gathering, you should always look up tips or rules in advance.
Usually, venues will have tips posted on their site.
Make sure that you read them and abide by them to avoid any fees, arrests, or dangerous situations.
Always Let Someone Know Where You Are Staying and Where You Are Going
Generally, when it comes to traveling to a new place, always let someone know where you will be at.
This helps keep you safe in case anything does happen.
Although these cities are safe, there are always risks to being a traveler in a new location.
West Virginia Safety Overview
READ THE FULL REPORT: West Virginia Safety ReviewSafety Index:
- OVERALL RISK: MEDIUM
- TRANSPORT & TAXIS RISK: LOW
- PICKPOCKETS RISK: MEDIUM
- NATURAL DISASTERS RISK: MEDIUM
- MUGGING RISK: MEDIUM
- TERRORISM RISK: LOW
- SCAMS RISK: MEDIUM
- WOMEN TRAVELERS RISK: HIGH
Frequently Asked Questions
What is The Most Dangerous City in West Virginia?
Beckley is the most dangerous city in West Virginia.
In 2021 alone, Beckley experienced over 100 aggravated assaults, over 20 rapes, three murders, and over 10 robberies!
Other crimes consisted of larceny and robbery, leaving Beckley to be the most dangerous spot in the state.
Is West Virginia a Safe State to Live?
West Virginia is generally a safe state to live in.
Although there has been some rising concern about property crime rates as well as gun violence, West Virginia is still safe.
Which is Safer - West Virginia or Virginia?
For 2022, West Virginia is the safer spot, with Virginia coming in second in the South Atlantic.
West Virginia has lower violent crime rates as well as property crime rates.