The study looked at more than 40 characteristics that influence how safe people feel living in their communities.

The city of Columbia has once again been named the safest city in America by the website Wallet Hub. This is the fourth consecutive year the Howard County city won the honor, beating out 182 cities across the nation.

"Columbia was built on the principle that people of all backgrounds - together - make a vibrant community," said Columbia Association (CA) President and CEO Lakey Boyd. "The high quality of life we're able to enjoy is achieved when each individual feels safe being exactly who they are, living in their neighborhoods, sending their kids to school and enjoying public spaces. CA is grateful to be part of that mission, and this team continues to be committed to providing places and programs where everyone feels welcome and safe in their environment."

This year’s study also considered average weekly rates of COVID-19 infections, deaths from COVID, and the percentage of residents who are vaccinated for COVID-19. More than 87% of residents in Howard County are fully vaccinated and 93% of eligible residents have received at least one dose, giving it one of the highest vaccination rates in the state of Maryland.

St. Louis, Missouri, came in last in the study overall and Baltimore had the fewest hate crimes per capita. To see how other cities in the U.S. ranked, go to

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