Louisiana : Safety by City
- Baton Rouge
- Bossier City
- Lake Charles
- New Iberia
- New Orleans
Pineville, Louisiana, sits just across the Red River from the larger Alexandria.
This is Central Louisiana at its finest.
Here you’re in the heart of the bible belt, with people more likely to ask what church you attend than where you’re from.
In fact, a little more than a decade ago, you wouldn’t have been able to purchase alcohol in Pineville.
This is also a smaller, sleepier suburb in Central Louisiana.
Pineville is also the training ground for the Louisiana National Guard, and nearby Fort Beauregard makes it feel a bit more like a military town.
This isn’t the most exciting town in Louisiana, and there is really no way around it.
A new project hopes to revitalize the old town hall and attract more tourists.
You’ll find fishing and hunting activities here and a state historic site that was important during the Civil War.
Pineville does have its own police department, but the agency hasn’t offered crime statistics since 2000.
Since Louisiana’s crime rate has grown exponentially since then, we’ll use some crime data mixed with news reports to give you a better overview of the city.
Warnings & Dangers in Pineville
OVERALL RISK: LOW
As far as Louisiana cities go, Pineville is safer than most. That doesn't mean there's no risk, but it's much safer than neighboring Alexandria. There are some new crime trends to discuss as we go through.
TRANSPORT & TAXIS RISK: LOW
You'll want your own vehicle to enjoy the whole region. You can use taxis and rideshares too. There are eight bus routes through the city.
PICKPOCKETS RISK: LOW
The theft rate here was two and a half times the national average in 2020, and a 2022 trend of car break-ins is especially concerning. While there's a low risk of being pickpocketed, you should use extra safety precautions for any place you store your valuables, including your car and hotel room.
NATURAL DISASTERS RISK: LOW
The biggest risks here are tornadoes accompanying severe thunderstorms, and those can happen any time of year, with spring being the most active season. You should also be wary of the hurricane season, from June through November, as the storms can move up the state from the gulf and still cause extensive damage.
MUGGING RISK: LOW
In 2020, just 10 robberies were reported. Throughout 2022, the most common robberies reported involved businesses, not individuals. You can feel safe there's a low risk, but use extra caution if you're out at night.
TERRORISM RISK: LOW
There's a low risk here, even with the nearby Camp Beauregard. You can also check the Homeland Security Terrorism Alert status before you visit to see where elevated risks are regionally in the United States.
SCAMS RISK: LOW
Tourist scams are rare here, but you should be wary of people who try to sell you cheap gold or silver. Don't book a rental house through a third-party website like Craigslist.
WOMEN TRAVELERS RISK: LOW
Women should use the same caution as men, and nothing in crime data or recent news reports suggest there's an elevated risk for women. If you aren't very "outdoorsy," you should study Louisiana wilderness safety information because there are a lot of specifics for this region.
TAP WATER RISK: LOW
The 2021 Water Quality Report shows no violations and full compliance for all water categories. There are a lot of old pipes in Pineville, so you can reduce the risk of debris from the pipes by letting the water run for a minute or so before using it for drinking or bathing. That just helps flush out the stagnant water from the pipe.
Safest Places to Visit in Pineville
AlexandriaPinevilleLA.com is the official tourism website for the region.
You can email email@example.com with any questions or call the toll-free hotline at 1-800-551-9546.
The Old Town Hall Museum will be a focal point for tourists in years to come.
The kickoff tour was held in late 2022, with no anticipated opening date, but check the schedule before you go.
I’m told this museum is ripe with historical artifacts that were just stored for years until the new museum could open.
That is located on Main Street, which is where you’ll find some stores and restaurants.
It’s not the most dynamic Main Street, but it’s also a work in progress.
Mt. Olivet Chapel is open for tours by appointment.
This is the oldest building in the region and one of the few to escape when Alexandria was burned down during the Civil War.
Take the tour and find out!
Forts Randolph and Buhlow State Historic Site is one of the main reasons people visit here.
Stop by the visitor’s center first to learn the history and battles of this land.
A wooden boardwalk will guide you through the wilderness and historic sites left on the property.
The hikes are only about 1/4 of a mile long.
Email firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions.
The Louisiana Maneuvers and Military Museum is often called an “overlooked treasure of World War II military artifacts.”
It is located on the military base, but I can’t find a single reference to getting visitor approval to access it.
You should call 318-641-5733 before your visit to ask if there is a protocol to get on base or if visitors can just see the museums.
Gone Wild Safari is a drive-through adventure with exotic animals and is just 15 minutes north of downtown Pineville.
You can also park, visit the petting zoo, or feed your favorite animal.
The safari is open seven days a week through 4:00 pm.
Places to Avoid in Pineville
The closer you get to Alexandria, the higher the crime rates will go.
While there’s not a neighborhood too dangerous to be in, you should always stick to the main roads and highways.
Avoid going into Alexandria without reading our updated article about crime and safety there.
The city is seeing an influx of violent crime, and even though it’s so close, it’s a world away in many key safety areas.
Take the weather seriously here, as a thunderstorm can quickly turn severe and spawn tornadoes.
It’s too dangerous to be outside in the intense storms of Louisiana, and flash flooding is a real risk.
Safety Tips for Traveling to Pineville
- Since the Pineville Police Department doesn’t offer official crime data, it’s wise to call the department before your visit or stop by when you get there to ask questions. The phone number is (318)449-5653, and the address is 910 Main Street.
- Book your reservations as far as possible if you are visiting during the Mardi Gras season. There are plenty of Mardi Gras activities here, and the hotels will quickly fill up.
- A new text notification service was released in late 2022. You just text PINEVILLEALERTS to 91986, and you’ll be signed up. This will cover emergency weather information and other safety details you’ll want to know during your visit.
- You’ll need a fishing license from the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries here. There are several options to choose from, so review the list on the department’s website. You can purchase them online if you’d like, but they are also available at sporting goods stores throughout the state.
- You’ll need a hunter certification course if you want to hunt while you’re there. This is required for everyone born after September 1, 1969. Louisiana is tough on poachers, so don’t try to skip the requirements. There is an online course offered for $30.
- Pineville Police use the Neighbors app to monitor crime in the area. If you get access to the app, you’ll be able to see videos posted by people in the community. This could include surveillance video of crimes or suspicious activity.
- You’ll need to use a lot of bug spray in this area. Mosquitoes breed throughout the year, and the bug bites can be annoying, but also carry a risk of spreading West Nile Virus. A citrus-based perfume or cologne will help as well.
- There are alligators in this part of Louisiana. You might even see them in the city or near a community lake or pond. You should always assume there is an alligator in fresh water. Don’t bait them or feed them. The police won’t respond to reports of alligators unless it’s causing a public nuisance, and the wildlife department won’t trap them unless they are posing a threat.
- The city’s Facebook page @PinevilleLA includes a monthly Mayor’s Minute. I find it’s a great resource to get the pulse of the community. The mayor talks about everything from safety to events or future planning. You can follow the police department @PinevillePD.
- If you are going to spend time camping or hiking in the wilderness, bring a battery-powered weather radio with you. You can also check your mobile phone provider’s coverage map to see the dead spots for coverage. You can’t afford to be in the wilderness without reliable weather information.
So... How Safe Is Pineville Really?
Without updated crime data for Pineville, we have to err on the side of caution here.
Even as of 2020, the violent crime rate was twice the national average, and the theft rate was two and a half times the national average.
I’ve seen a problem in Louisiana developing in many communities involving juvenile offenders.
In late 2022, Pineville Police warned about the same thing happening there.
Police blame unsupervised juveniles for rash crimes like car burglaries, car theft, fights, and vandalism.
This is good information to know since many people will assume kids aren’t going to be dangerous.
There have also been reports of thefts at campsites and RV parks.
Pineville isn’t one of the more dangerous cities in Louisiana, but it’s also not one of the more exciting.
Use the standard safety precautions while you’re here.
This is also a rather conservative area that is very religious, so don’t get into political or religious arguments with people who live here.
Just enjoy the unique central Louisiana culture.
How Does Pineville Compare?
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Anyone entering the U.S. from outside the country will need a valid passport and a U.S. Visa. The State Department is in charge of the Visa and Visa Waiver program, so review the website before you start the process. There are various visa applications and steps, so you don't want to mess up one part, or else you'll have to start all over again.
The U.S. Dollar is the only currency you can use here. Credit cards are widely accepted, but there are some parks where you'll need cash. You should exchange currency before you arrive or at the airport to ensure the safest transaction.
You'll want a warm jacket in the winter, but it doesn't get bitterly cold as it does in the northern states. The rest of the year will be warm to hot - but always muggy. The humidity in Louisiana is quite intense, so bring extra clothing. You'll easily sweat through your clothes, and if you don't have access to a laundry facility, you'll have to buy extra t-shirts or undergarments.
Alexandria International Airport is just 15 minutes away. The larger airports in Shreveport and Baton Rouge are each two hours away by car.
Buy travel insurance when you purchase your travel tickets. That will give you a policy that goes into effect immediately. You should also consider car rental insurance if your home policy doesn't cover a rental car. Storms and flooding can create costly repairs for drivers here.
Pineville Weather Averages (Temperatures)
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Louisiana - Safety by City