California : Safety by City
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Tucked into the base of the San Bernardino Mountains in the Inland Empire of California sits Redlands.
The city gets its name from the reddish glow of the ground, and has gone through several nicknames from “The City of Millionaires” to “The City of Beautiful Homes” to “Washington Navel Orange Growing Capital of the World.”
Now it’s known as “A Big Town with a Small Town Feel.”
From stately homes to modern shopping centers, Redlands is a beautiful city that just keeps growing.
This is a city that embraces its history and keeps it’s downtown quaint, comfortable, and safe.
Another benefit of Redlands is how close it is to other top destinations.
You could theoretically start the day with a beach sunrise at Newport Beach, ski the afternoon away at Big Bear, and close out the day with dinner in Palm Springs.
The Inland Empire is the name of the area near Riverside and San Bernardino and it is part of the Los Angeles metropolitan area.
It’s not an official location, but this whole area is often referred to as the Inland Empire or The Empire.
Warnings & Dangers in Redlands
OVERALL RISK : LOW
There's a low overall risk in Redlands. It's a family-oriented town with a lot of history and a growing population. It's a nice escape from the hustle of the city but still close enough for a night out on the town.
TRANSPORT & TAXIS RISK : LOW
Omnitrans is the bus service that gives rides to more than 11 million people each year throughout San Bernardino County. Taxis and rideshares are available too. All have low risk. However, having a car here would allow for more adventures.
PICKPOCKETS RISK : LOW
There were just four pickpockets reported in 2020, so that's a low risk. There are a lot of shopping areas here, so be aware of your surroundings and keep your purse or wallet close and secured.
NATURAL DISASTERS RISK : MEDIUM
Wildfires and earthquakes are the two biggest risks here. There's a medium risk just from the potential damage that could happen, but on a typical day, you're going to have beautiful weather in Redlands.
MUGGING RISK : LOW
There's a low risk of being mugged. There were 69 robberies reported in 2020 and 21 of those were robberies in public.
TERRORISM RISK : MEDIUM
We have to give any city within the LA metro area a medium risk, just because terrorists like to target large population areas and tourist attractions. LA has both and more, including military presence and major corporations.
SCAMS RISK : LOW
There are about half a dozen popular scams in this area, but none that include tourists. There are utility scams and phone phishing scams. You shouldn't have an issue with scams and there's a low risk.
WOMEN TRAVELERS RISK : LOW
Women shouldn't feel unsafe at all visiting here. There's a low risk and a lot of opportunities for a girlfriend's weekend getaway, and even some popular wedding venues to explore.
TAP WATER RISK : LOW
Tap water has a low risk. Relands Municipal Utilities Department states, "Redlands Municipal Utilities Department is committed to providing water that meets or surpasses all state and federal water quality standards at the lowest possible cost for our customers."
Safest Places to Visit in Redlands
Please go to Big Bear and send me pictures.
Ok, it’s not IN Redlands, but it’s just an hour’s drive into the mountains.
There is something to do in all seasons in Big Bear and the worst problem you’ll have is the traffic.
In Redlands, go on a home tour.
The historic walking tour takes you to some of the most stately and beautiful homes you’ll see in California.
The Victorian-era designs are worth the journey.
The Kimberly Crest House & Gardens is the crown jewel of homes in Redlands.
Rent a bicycle and explore Redlands on two wheels.
The city is bike-friendly and has a path that stretches from one end of town to the other.
There are trails off the main road and lanes and green turning boxes for cyclists on main roads.
Umbrella Alley is the spot to take a photo for social media.
The umbrellas create a sky of color above you and this alley is surrounded by restaurants and shopping.
A walk through downtown Redlands is a good way to experience the real vibe of this city.
If you want to climb a mountain, go after San Gorgonio Mountain.
It’s the tallest peak in California south of the Sierra Nevada mountain range.
Study up on the Sand to Snow National Monument before you go.
(Hint: It’s not a monument as you would traditionally think of one.)
Places to Avoid in Redlands
A couple of tourism notes here first.
A lot of websites that aren’t as up-to-date as this one tout the Splash Kingdom Waterpark as a place to visit.
It’s not open any longer.
It was torn down after years of safety violations and hazards.
Also, if you see Olive Dell Ranch in your search and think of visiting, you should know it’s not a park.
It’s a nudist colony.
Don’t Google it at work either, because there are nude photographs right on the front page.
Crime maps show most areas of Redlands are safe, with the only higher crime spots being west of the 210.
The southern parts of town are newer and wealthier, while the northern end of town is considered more “working class.”
There isn’t a bad neighborhood to avoid or a warning to avoid walking around at night in busy retail areas here.
Safety Tips for Traveling to Redlands
- The city has a Discover Redlands app that details all the shopping, dining, and attractions offered in the area. This is a great tool to plan your day without missing something big.
- The city of Redlands has automatic license plate readers, where your car and license plate information are recorded and stored in the police database. The video is only reviewed when police are looking for a “hot list” of stolen vehicles or vehicles reported to be involved with crimes.
- You can report a non-emergency crime on the Police Department’s website. Take pictures and videos if you can do so safely. This is for items like drug deals or homeless people becoming aggressive. If there’s a real emergency like an assault or fire, call 911.
- You cannot drive in Redlands while using the phone or sending text messages. The only exceptions are if you are using a hands-free device to talk or using the device as your GPS.
- If you are walking around, only use crosswalks to cross the street. Don’t just run across the middle of a roadway. There are a lot of pedestrian accidents in California that can be avoided by drivers and pedestrians following the rules.
- To get concierge service to answer all your questions during your visit, call the Redlands Visitor’s Center at (909)735-5158.
- For bicycle riding, it’s always ideal to wear a helmet and pads, but in Redlands, it’s the law for anyone under 18 years of age. This goes for skateboards and roller skates as well.
- There is a noise ordinance in Redlands after 10 p.m. and any violation of it can result in a “Disturbing the Peace” citation.
- During wildfire season in the summer and fall, follow social media sites for Redlands and San Bernardino County police and fire. There could be road closures or evaluations that impact your trip. Air quality can also be impacted by these fires. In 2020 a wildfire in this area was sparked by gender reveal party that included pyrotechnics. It doesn’t take much to start off a big fire in this area.
- The Santa Ana winds or “Devil Winds” can come down the mountains and cause damage throughout the Inland Empire and through the coastal areas. Not only do these winds fuel wildfires, but they can also knock down powerlines or cause structural damage. They are generally referred to by locals as the “Santa Ana’s.”
So... How Safe Is Redlands Really?
It’s pretty darn safe for a city in the Los Angeles area.
The risk of being a violent crime victim is 1 in 307.
For robberies, that risk goes to 1 in 1040. For theft, it’s 1 in 56.
There were seven homicides in Redlands in 2020 and they were all connected to domestic violence situations.
None was an attack on a stranger or tourist.
Even Police Chief Chris Catren has this to say about crime in Redlands in 2021, “Some things are up, like catalytic converter theft.
Everyone knows someone who has had one stolen.
That’s a frustrating crime because it is so costly to replace those.
But overall, the crimes that impact most people, like burglaries and general theft, have remained steady with last year.
Coming out of lockdown, everyone expected those to bounce back to pre-pandemic levels.”
Even the downtown area has a low crime rate when you look at the crime maps, which is uncommon for cities this size.
Redlands started as a home for wealthy people seeking a new life in California and while it’s not as wealthy as Beverly Hills, there are some really nice parts of this community and people who want to keep it safe and prosperous.
How Does Redlands Compare?
- Visas - You're good with the Visa you got approved to get through customs. No additional ID is required in Redlands.
- Currency - The U.S. Dollar is the currency here. There are a lot of places to spend money in Redlands and the surrounding area, so give your credit card company a heads up that you'll be traveling and might break traditional spending patterns. Set a spending limit alert so you can get notified if there is a large purchase that wasn't yours.
- Weather - Winter, spring, and fall are beautiful here. Highs in the 60s or 70s with lows in the 40s and 50s. You'll want a jacket or a hoodie for the chilly nights. Summers get hot with temperatures near triple digits. Lows get into the 60s, so a light jacket might be useful if you think that's cold. There's desert air here, so there isn't a lot of humidity or rain.
- Airports - You are just eight miles from the San Bernardino International Airport in Redlands. LAX is 81 miles away, but I'm writing this at rush hour time in LA, and with traffic that rides would take you two and a half hours. Ouch. There's a LOT of red on the map too, showing delays or slowdowns. John Wayne Airport in Orange County is two hours in traffic, and there's even MORE red on that map.
- Travel Insurance - You'll want travel insurance for a trip to Redlands, California, as the wildfires, winds, and other emergencies can cause delays or cancellations.
Redlands Weather Averages (Temperatures)
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