How safe is Los Angeles?

Old May 19th, 2005, 03:21 PM
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How safe is Los Angeles?

My family and I will be visiting LA in June, we are wondering how safe the city is. We have read about all the gang problems and are wondering which areas we should avoid both in the daytime and nighttime. How safe is it at night to drive around. We are live in South Florida so big cities aren't a problem.
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Old May 19th, 2005, 03:41 PM
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The city by and large is safe. The "places to avoid" are places you ordinarily wouldn't go to anyway, although I will say that Hollywood's side streets can get dicey after dark. Just take the usual precautions you would take in any large city (but this is a far larger city in area than most)-- and you'll be fine.

It's safe to drive around in, too. Don't give in to road rage, though.

My feeling is that the media have a vested interest in making California sound as unsafe as possible so that you spend your travel dollars elsewhere. Well, it's all baloney. I've lived here for 20 years and never felt unsafe.
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Old May 19th, 2005, 04:11 PM
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Generally speaking you are not likely to be in the gang influenced, troubled neighborhoods as a tourist.
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Old May 20th, 2005, 07:54 AM
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I would not drive around unfamiliar neighborhood streets at night. If you are returning to your hotel on the freeways or main boulevards you will be fine. I have lived here for over thirty years, and there definitely are neighborhoods that change character at night. Unless you get lost, you should not be there. It's a bit like those tourists trying to find the airport in Miami. If you are going to be here for a while I would invest in some detailed street maps.
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Old May 20th, 2005, 12:00 PM
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There are websites I found 'googling' around on this topic recently (crime in Los Angeles) that showed maps of L.A. with crime stats per neighborhood (like with a 1-5 for different types of danger).
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Old May 20th, 2005, 12:31 PM
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There have been a lot of freeway shootings recently. Although it is unlikely that you will experience this, even locals are concerned about the shootings. Don't cut off anyone on the freeways or flip people off when driving. Californians take driving seriously and if you are rude or incompetent at driving who knows what may happen.
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Old May 20th, 2005, 05:03 PM
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I bet those freeway shootings have nothing to do with road rage. The big local newspapers report a very small fraction of crime, unless it is someone famous or white, or living on the west side. Fox News, on the other hand, loves a good car chase. I was about 5 minutes away from being in the middle of a recently reported police chase that ended in a fatal shooting and bullet-shattered windows in a local shopping center. I don't feel unsafe, but I don't believe those that say "you have nothing to worry about" either.
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Old May 20th, 2005, 11:22 PM
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I know that downtown L.A. is sort of getting revived with a lot of architecturally notable buildings haveing been erected in recent years, which is why I would certainly not rule out going there during the day, but I'd certainly avoid the area East of roughly Spring St/ Main St. It gets a bit dodgy there for my taste.
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