Is Midland Safe? Crime Rates & Safety Report

Updated On June 21, 2024
Midland, United States
Safety Index:
* Based on Research & Crime Data

Sometimes, cities have really cool stories behind their names. Midland, Texas, isn’t one of them.

However, it’s still an important stop midway between El Paso and Fort Worth.

Midland is often paired with Odessa when referring to the statistical region, yet the two cities often rival each other off and on the football field.

In fact, Friday Night Lights was inspired by nearby Odessa.

The region surrounding Midland is often referred to as the Permian Basin.

It’s the remnants of an ancient sea rich in organic material from marine plants and animals.

When these organisms died, they were buried under layers of sediment.

Long story short – that created one of the most oil-rich landscapes in the world.

Midland was put on the elite oil industry map in 1923.

When you look around the landscape, you see oil derricks for miles on end.

This is also a city that gave us two presidents, two governors, and a first lady – all within the Bush family.

What would Hollywood be without Woody Harrelson and Tommy Lee Jones, both of whom spent part of their childhoods in Midland?

Aside from the global oil industry, Midland also made interactional headlines in 1987 when “Baby Jessica” fell down a narrow well.

The world watched for nearly three days before she was rescued.

A visit to Midland includes seeing historic sites, educational museums about the Southwest and petroleum, and enjoying outdoor treasures that break the mold of the brown, barren desert.

Warnings & Dangers in Midland

Overall Risk


There's a low risk in Midland, and we'll discuss just a few safety aspects a little later. To visit for a weekend, you'll find plenty of unique things to do that are fun for the whole family.

Transport & Taxis Risk


The EZ-Rider system provides fixed-route services through Midland and nearby Odessa. Taxis and rideshare services are available as well. A rental car is a great way to explore more of the region without being stuck on someone else's schedule. Any option is a low risk.

Pickpockets Risk


About six pickpockets or purse snatching are reported each year. That's a low risk, but you should still only carry what you absolutely need and be sure to put wallets in the front pants pocket, not the back.

Natural Disasters Risk


The risks here run the gamut, from tornadoes to severe thunderstorms to wildfires. Don't let a day go by without checking the forecast and have a way to receive emergency alerts.

Mugging Risk


About five muggings happen each year, listed in crime data as highway robberies. That's a low risk but enough to remind you to keep up with personal safety tactics, especially at night.

Terrorism Risk


As far as the state of Texas is concerned, cartels and gang members are terrorists, so Midland has a medium risk. The traditional international terrorism concerns here give way to the rise of about 150 gangs making their presence known in the Midland area. The best thing you can do is avoid any conflict and report anything suspicious immediately.

Scams Risk


Check local law enforcement social media sites for the latest scams. The local Better Business Bureau office and the state Attorney General’s office will have common scam tactics and protection advice. The most common scam I saw was a spoofed phone number, which happens in just about every city in America.

Women Travelers Risk


The risk is low, but you should still use basic safety practices while you're visiting. The people here are friendly and welcoming, but you shouldn't trust someone immediately if you don't know them. Also, the area around the metro region might not have the best mobile phone service. Always let someone know where you're going and when you plan to be back.

Tap Water Risk


The U.S. has strict standards for tap water per the Safe Water Drinking Act. Communities are required to provide a Water Quality Report (Consumer Confidence Report) once a year by July 1. Midland has recently dealt with arsenic in the water, and it's a bit too complicated to go through it all here. My best suggestion is to read the most recent news articles about "Midland Utilities" and "arsenic." However, the latest water quality report doesn't show any indication of this issue other than arsenic levels were at the maximum allowed level. In January 2024, the city issued a statement that read, in part, "In our commitment to providing safe and high-quality water, we are now pioneering a new treatment method that promises to remove up to 57% of arsenic from the groundwater."

Safest Places to Visit in Midland

The tourism website for Midland is

Since there are several other states and countries with a city named Midland, be sure you’re always looking at a location with a 432 area code.

A tourism guide is available for download without having to give an email address or phone number, which is always refreshing to see.

The Museum of the Southwest offers a rich cultural experience featuring both art and history exhibits.

One of its highlights is the Turner Mansion, a historic home that provides a glimpse into the affluent lifestyle of early 20th-century Midland.

Another highlight is the Marian Blakemore Planetarium, which has special projectors and telescopes to explore the solar system.

See the oil industry’s impact at the Permian Basin Petroleum Museum.

Interactive exhibits cover the history of oil exploration, drilling technology, and minerals of the region.

Plus, there’s a race car exhibit named after the local men who invented Chapparal Cars.

Step inside one of the homes that created a political dynasty in America.

The Bush Family Home is a state historic site where the Bush family lived from 1951 through 1955.

The 1,400 square foot home is modest compared to the homes the family would go on to have, most notably the White House.

The I-20 Wildlife Preserve provides a peaceful retreat with walking trails that wind through various natural habitats.

Visitors can observe a variety of wildlife, including birds and small mammals, in their natural environment within the Chihuahuan Desert ecosystem.

This is a great place to stop, even if you’re just driving through and want to stretch your legs.

Sibley Nature Center features educational exhibits that highlight the flora, fauna, and geology of the Southern Llano Estacado region.

Outdoor enthusiasts can explore hiking trails that wind through the center’s grounds, offering a close-up view of local plant and animal life.

Plenty of local theaters can entice you to take in a show.

The historic Yucca Theatre is the longest-running show of its kind in the country, filled with laughs and a legacy of more than 50 years.

Summer Mummers is one of the unique performances in West Texas.

You can also look for opera tickets or check out the concerns in Centennial Park.

If you’re looking for a day trip, you have two national parks that are well worth the drive.

Big Bend National Park is about 4.5 hours from Midland, a place where deserts, rivers, and mountains meet.

It’s also known for having some of the darkest night skies in the country.

Guadalupe Mountains National Park is three hours west and is on the escarpment of the Permian Reef.

The highest point in Texas is there, with miles of hiking trails that lead to stunning summits, a unique canyon called Devil’s Hall, and salt dunes.

If you want my advice, don’t miss a chance to hike McKittrick Canyon there.

It’s known as the hardest hike in the state.

Places to Avoid in Midland

There isn’t a specific bad part of town or dangerous neighborhood in Midland, but it’s best to avoid driving through random neighborhoods.

Stick to the main roads with a map of where you’re going readily available.

Given how much crime happens in private homes and the presence of gangs in the city, you just want to stay in welcoming, safe places.

Now if you were moving to Midland, I’d suggest finding a place on the north side of town.

You will find a nice collection of hotels on the north and northwest sides of the city.

Maybe you’re visiting Midland for work or looking for a place to stop on a long road trip.

However, if you’re just looking for a great Texas town to visit, please look at the map and note the expansive sections of empty space.

You are a solid five-hour drive from any major city.

The isolation and surrounding flat, rather lifeless landscape can make it feel a bit boring.

Safety Tips for Traveling to Midland

  1. Midland has a local police department, and you can follow them on Facebook, X, or Instagram @MidlandTxPD. Call (432) 685-7108 if you have specific safety questions.
  2. The police post crime statistics from the previous year on their website, as well as offer an interactive crime map to search for more recent crimes. Given how much crime statistics can change in a few months, the interactive map gives you the best look at crime hot spots.
  3. Sign up for the Citizen Alert System using the address of your hotel to get emergency notifications. This will cover everything from severe weather risks to public safety hazards. You shouldn’t just use any address, as evacuations will generally be done using a zip code.
  4. Due to the risk of wildfires, crews will burn certain pieces of land to reduce the debris. This is called a prescribed burn. You can use the website to find information on any fire in the region.
  5. On the flip side, Midland is prone to flooding during periods of heavy rain. You should never attempt to cross a flooded roadway, even if the water doesn’t look that deep. As recently as May 2024, at least half a dozen cars were stuck in rising floodwater after ignoring this sage advice.
  6. As I was researching this article, I stumbled upon a great Facebook group called Midland/Odessa Thieves on Blast. It’s worth looking at the recent list of thefts and scams to help prepare for your trip.
  7. Use the website or app for Drive Texas to check road conditions, construction zones, real-time traffic, and weather conditions along your route. If you create an account, you can choose a route and sign up for alerts along the way.
  8. If you’re driving the interstate between Texas cities, you should know that it’s long, straight, and flat in most areas. I drove from El Paso to Dallas, and this road kept trying to give me highway hypnosis. Don’t drive it when you’re tired, though I-20 does have rumble strips that make a loud rumbling noise and cause the car to vibrate if a tire leaves the designated lane.
  9. Another thing to look out for when driving around West Texas is dust storms. Blowing dust can cause limited to zero visibility and blind drivers temporarily. A dust storm led to a 30-car pileup in Midland back in April 2024.
  10. Several human trafficking busts have happened in Midland over the past few years. It’s concerning enough to warrant researching how to spot signs of this awful crime. The National Human Trafficking Hotline website has a bunch of great information on this. Keep your eyes peeled at places like truck stops and roadside diners.

So... How Safe Is Midland Really?

Violent crime in Midland is 2% higher than the state average and 11% higher than the national average.

Violent crime peaked in 2022, with a 15% drop in 2023.

Only about 12% of violent crimes happened against strangers, and 57% happened in homes, which means the bulk of violent crimes are domestic in nature.

While many cities have it worse than Midland, the law enforcement here isn’t messing around.

When numbers started to spike in mid-2023, a joint agency task force went after the most violent offenders, arresting more than two dozen.

That comes with good reason – an influx of gangs in West Texas.

“We have prison gangs, we have local gangs, we have Alamo motorcycle gangs…I mean we have all of them,” Sgt. Jason Claire, Midland Police Gang Unit, said.

Theft sits around the national average, with 37% attributed to car break-ins and accessory thefts.

About 7–8 cars a week (on average) are stolen in Midland.

While at one point Midland had the highest car theft rate in the country, that number was a spike in 2020 that has since gone back to “normal” levels.

Theft is another issue that ties back to gang activity.

“It can be anywhere from burglaries, homes or vehicles, robberies, anywhere they can make money.

Whether it’s narcotics distribution, oil field theft, anything they can make some type of money off of,” Sgt. Claire added.

Statistically, it’s safer to stay in Midland than in Odessa.

Just be sure to lock your car, roll up the windows, and remove all personal items from inside.

Common sense goes a long way in Midland.

How Does Midland Compare?

CitySafety Index
Las Vegas62
San Francisco61
St. Louis58
Brussels (Belgium)60
Shanghai (China)66
Belize City (Belize)37
La Paz (Bolivia)52
Sao Paulo (Brazil)45
Rio de Janeiro (Brazil)43

Useful Information



All international visitors need either a visa defining the purpose of the trip (tourist, work, school, etc.) or a visa waiver. Start the process using the Visa Wizard module on the U.S. State Department website. You’ll quickly find out which one you need. Also, keep in mind that your passport must be valid for at least six months after our trip, or you’ll need to apply for a new one.



Only the U.S. Dollar (USD) is accepted in the United States. International airports usually have a currency exchange desk on site, while regional airports won’t. Your home bank offers the lowest fees. For those using credit cards, check to see if there’s a foreign transaction fee before you start racking up charges. Avoid using the quick cash/payday loan stores in Midland to get currency. The fees are exorbitant.



West Texas has a drier climate than central or east Texas, but you need to prepare for the late spring, summer and early fall heat. Temperatures easily get to the upper 90s (F) from May through September. Winter will have highs in the 60s, but the lows can get near freezing. Pack layers of clothing to acclimate as the day wears on. Wear sunscreen year-round.



Midland International Air & Space Port (MAD) is the nearest airport, and it's not as "small-town airport" as you might expect. Four airlines serve the airport. There are flights to major cities like Dallas, Las Vegas, Palm Beach, and Toronto.

Travel Insurance

Travel Insurance

Travel insurance goes into effect as soon as you purchase it, so don't wait to start reaping the benefits. Comprehensive insurance offers the best protection and peace of mind. You'll also want roadside assistance insurance if you're getting a rental car.

Click here to get an offer for travel insurance

Midland Weather Averages (Temperatures)

Jan 9° C
Feb 12° C
Mar 16° C
Apr 21° C
May 25° C
Jun 29° C
Jul 30° C
Aug 29° C
Sep 25° C
Oct 20° C
Nov 14° C
Dec 9° C
Choose Temperature Unit

Average High/Low Temperature

Temperature / MonthJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec

Texas - Safety by City

CitySafety Index
Corpus Christi71
Del Rio68
Dell City81
El Paso77
Fort Davis80
Fort Worth77
Grand Prairie72
New Braunfels83
Port Aransas83
San Angelo83
San Antonio53
South Padre Island70
Wichita Falls68

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