4 Reasons Lubbock Texas is Dangerous
Lubbock, TX has a lot to offer to both individuals and companies. For 2017, the population is expected to increase 6.1% and it looks like Lubbock will only continue to get larger. Our strong economy and job market outpace many other areas of the U.S.
Despite Lubbock County hitting a milestone of 300,000 residents, our crime rate is high per capita. Lubbock is also dangerous for our weather. We are included in the infamous “Tornado Alley” and also have a high number of lightening strikes, hail storms and other unpredictable weather.
All of this danger, unfortunately makes Lubbock a high cost market for insurance. Danger creates unpredictable risks, which increases claims and costs for insurance companies. Let’s dive into the major reasons Lubbock is considered dangerous.
1. Drunk Driving
Lubbock, TX is number one in the United States – in deaths from DUI, according to Men’s Health. That’s right, drunk drivers kill themselves and other people more in Lubbock than anywhere else in the country. In addition to death, drunk drivers also cause injuries and property damage that runs into the millions. Lubbock is 12th in the nation in DUI arrests, but that doesn’t keep drunks out of their cars, off the roads, and safely locked away.
Consider that drivers with a record of DUI are often uninsured or underinsured, leaving their victims grieving, injured and further burdened financially. Moving to or already live in Lubbock? Adequate auto insurance is crucial for protection against drivers guilty of DUI.
Here are some recent headlines that highlight the problem:
- A 21-year-old Texas Tech student killed a woman while driving under the influence of alcohol received on a field trip.
- An early Sunday morning accident killed a woman in March of 2017. The driver was charged with intoxication manslaughter.
- A family and their infant were severely injured, when a drunk driver crashed into their home. As of January 2017, they have now filed a lawsuit against three restaurants that served the driver.
State law minimums require liability insurance on each vehicle, but even if you don’t want comprehensive, you can still get insurance to protect against uninsured and under insured motorists. This option helps repay any lost wages from an accident, vehicles repairs and medical bills for you and passengers.
2. Violent Crime
Lubbock often tops lists for crime. Neighborhood Scout found it only 3% safer than other U.S. cities with a 1 in 104 chance of being a victim of violent crime.
The FBI recently released 2016 data for crime in the United States. Lubbock was ranked as the 2nd most dangerous city in Texas with 825.4 violent crimes reported per 100,000 residents. Odessa came in first with 1,070 per capita. Lubbock came in second again for property crime per 100,000 residents, behind San Antonio.
Looking at percentage increases by category, shows that violent crime increased by almost 15% and property crime had an increase of 17%
The FBI defines burglary as the unlawful entry of a structure to commit a felony or theft. Robbery is taking or attempting to take anything of value from another individual. Robbery implies the use of force or fear to steal property.
Of those in Lubbock, the police department says that aggravated assaults alone run at 685 per 100,000 in comparison to 252 on average for other cities. Many of these are classified as domestic violence, while another significant percentage come from bar fights. In fact, the violent crime rate in Lubbock is 88% higher than the average across Texas.
Most of these crimes occur in bars or at work. If it is at work, workman’s compensation will pay for medical expenses. As an employer, you need to have proper insurance coverage for employees.
Armed robberies are likely to affect convenience stores, gas stations and pharmacies. October of 2015, noticed a 40% increase in armed robberies.
300 – 400 rapes occur each year in the South Plains area, with 17 percent of the rapes involving strangers.
For the most violent of crimes, 2015 set a record for homicides in Lubbock with 16 murders taking place in the Hub City and 9 occurred in 2016.
3. Robbery, Theft, and Property Crime
Robbery in the ‘Hub City’ is ranked at 328 per 100,000. But, property crime is at 4,957 per 100,000. That is nearly 1500 more property crimes than the national average for metro areas. Theft, burglary, and vandalism rates are 49% higher than the state average. In fact, your chances of being a victim of these crimes is 1 out of 21. Vehicle theft in Lubbock is 356 per 100,000. The national average is 221.
With these kinds of numbers, you need to have good property insurance. A solid insurance policy can cover loss of property, but it can also cover damage to your property. Your insurance should cover anything outside or inside your home. For example, if someone kicks in your back door and rips a wall safe out of the closet, both damages should be covered. In some cases, your homeowners insurance will cover items stolen from your vehicles, too.
4. Weather Damage in Lubbock
In 1970, an F5 tornado flattened downtown. Since then, Lubbock county averages four tornadoes and 1 fatality each year.
In addition to tornadoes, the South Plains area is affected by damaging weather each year. Hurricane force winds, with sustained gales of 50 to 75 mph are common in the spring. These high winds rip off and damage shingles on roofs and break down trees.
2016 smashed records for a blizzard that hit in the new year, bringing snow drifts of up to four feet. The blizzard killed livestock, caused accidents and led to water damage in homes and businesses.
Hail is another weather event that is common in the area. In 2016, Lubbock and surrounding communities experienced record hail and flooding. It has now become common for devastating storms to affect Lubbock at least once a year.
Storm property damage requires comprehensive auto insurance, to protect from acts of nature. A home insurance policy with hail, lightening and wind coverage is also recommended. Flood insurance could be needed, depending on where your home is on the flood map.
Dangerous, but Still a Great Place to Live
All of this danger can make insurance rates expensive, compared to other parts of the U.S. and Texas. 2015 statistics put Lubbock County in the top ten for property damage and comprehensive auto insurance claims.
Yes, Lubbock TX is a dangerous place to live, in many ways. But danger makes West Texas what it is. It’s an unforgiving climate with forgiving people and a friendly business atmosphere. Despite the crime, accident, and weather statistics, we know Lubbock to be among the best places to live. That’s pretty indicative of the opportunities available in Lubbock. Just make sure you have the proper insurance!