The 10 States Safest From Natural Disasters

The US is prone to natural disasters such a hurricanes, tornadoes, floods, fires, and more. Editorial credit: Melissa Brandes /
The US is prone to natural disasters such a hurricanes, tornadoes, floods, fires, and more. Editorial credit: Melissa Brandes /

Most parts of the world are plagued by one kind of natural disaster or another. Natural disasters range from hurricanes and tornadoes all the way to earthquakes and droughts. Every time such a disaster happens, there are millions of people who are affected. Some people may end up dead while others are left homeless and without shelter and food. Another adverse effect of natural disasters is that they cost billions of dollars since the government and other humanitarian agencies use extensive resources in order to help the affected people. Some of the more recent natural disasters in the US include the devastating Hurricane Maria and Hurricane Harvey. The latter has recently devastated parts of Houston, Texas. Another hurricane, Irma, ravaged parts of Florida while there was a massive earthquake that shook Mexico City leaving hundreds dead. The following 10 US states are considered the safest from natural disasters, as they are not very prone to natural disasters of any kind.

10. Montana

The state of Montana is in the western region of the US and is characterized by a diverse landscape which includes the Rocky Mountains and the Great Plains. Although the state sees few natural disasters such as hurricanes, tornadoes, and earthquakes, Montana is known to flood on occasion. However, there are only been 5 significant floods in the past century.

9. New Hampshire

New Hampshire is a state in the US located in the New England region. It has the shortest ocean coastline of the coastal states and is known for its vast forests. Like the other Atlantic states, New Hampshire is at risk of hurricanes, however as they tend to lose their intensity as they move northwards, the New Hampshire coast largely remains out of harm's way. As such, flooding is the primary concern in New Hampshire. It is signifiant to note that the state was ranked sixth in terms of emergency preparedness in an analysis by WalletHub.

8. Maine

The state of Maine is located in the northern-easternmost region of the United States. The sparsely populated state of Maine is famous for its rugged coastlines. Luckily the state's northern location means that it's vast coastline does not normally see hurricanes as is common further south. The state is, however, known for severe summer storms which can include thunder, lightning, and flooding.

7. Maryland

Most of the suburbs in Maryland including the likes of Rockville, Frederick, and Bethesda were ranked as some of the safest cities. Even then, a cursory glance at the history of natural disasters in Maryland shows that storms and blizzards are the most common type of disasters. A few floods have also occurred in the past although not as serious as other parts of the country.

6. Colorado

Colorado, a state in the western side of the United States, is full of river canyons, arid deserts, and the Rocky Mountains covered in snow. Despite all this, data shows that Colorado is safer than most of the other states. Threats such as hurricanes, earthquakes, droughts, tornadoes, and others are minimal.

5. Ohio

Ohio is a state in the Midwest which ranges from the Appalachian Mountains to the south all the way to Lake Erie to the north. According to CBS News, Cleveland was the second-safest US city for natural disasters, with Cincinnati and Dayton also making the list. Although the state is near the infamous Tornado Alley and sees several tornadoes a year, the deadliest tornado recorded in the state dates back to 1924.

4. Vermont

Vermont is situated in the northeastern part of the United States and is made up of a forested natural landscape for the most part. Vermont, which is also a part of the region of New England, is defended from most natural disasters. In addition, the financial safety of the state to take care of its people in case of a disaster and the state's emergency preparedness rate it as one of the safest states from natural disasters.

3. Illinois

Bordering Indiana and the Mississippi River, the state of Illinois is also among the best places to live. Unlike most of the coastal cities of the US, Illinois, whose nickname is the Prairie State, is unlikely to be plagued by the common natural disasters such as earthquakes, tornadoes, hurricanes, tsunamis, and other disasters. Even drought does not affect the state so much due to the presence of Lake Michigan nearby which provides essential water for human, plant, and animal survival. Despite all of this, some natural disasters that may occur in Illinois include flooding, heat waves, and extreme cold.

2. Minnesota

This state is in the Midwestern regions of the US and is bounded by Lake Superior and Canada. Minneapolis-St.Paul, otherwise known as the Twin Cities, is also among the safest places from natural disasters. Based on data from the past 30 years about the frequency and the severity of the natural hazards, Minnesota is relatively safe but there are some confirmed risks of natural disasters in Minnesota. For example, there was a tornado that hit the state in 2011. In addition, there have been some floods in the past. However, the severity of these disasters is low compared to most of the other places.

1. Michigan

Michigan is a state in the mid-western region of the United States. Data from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and other sources show that Michigan, whose largest city is Detroit and is bordered by four of the Great Lakes, is ranked as one of the safest states in the US as it is shielded from natural catastrophes. In Michigan, the risk of hurricanes, tornadoes, or earthquakes is minimal. Even though the past has seen Michigan experiencing a few earthquakes and tornadoes, they were not as severe as other parts of the US.


More in World Facts