4 Tips to Help First-Time Visitors Stay Safe on the St. Louis Streets 

First-Time Visitors Stay Safe on the St. Louis Streets

Visiting a new city is always exciting, but you must prioritize safety. With its expansive culture, historic sights, and lively streets, St. Louis promises an unforgettable experience.

There’s plenty the city offers, from the legendary Gateway Arch to the vibrant suburbs. However, as with any major city, it’s wise to be prepared for a safe and comfortable trip. This blog post will share four essential tips to help ensure you have a smooth experience exploring St. Louis.

#1 Understand the Local Neighborhoods

Before you arrive, take some time to research the neighborhoods in St. Louis. Each suburb has its particularities, and understanding them can help you avoid dangerous situations. 

Popular tourist areas like Downtown, Central West End, and The Loop are generally safe and well-patrolled. They offer many attractions, dining options, and accommodations. 

NeighborhoodScout reports White House, Oakville Southwest, Oakville South, Oakville Southeast, and Concord Southwest as the safest neighborhoods in St. Louis. All these communities are home to the upper-middle class and have higher incomes than other American neighborhoods. The following numbers indicate how these neighborhoods fare against other American cities: 

  • White House (79.3%), 
  • Oakville Southwest (85.2%), 
  • Oakville South (82.6%), 
  • Oakville Southeast (79.9%), and 
  • Concord Southwest (77.6%). 

However, some neighborhoods are best avoided, especially at night. As of 2022, St. Louis has a violent crime rate of about 4 times (867.5) the average US rate (219.8). Moreover, the city has a greater crime rate than 99.5% of all US cities.

Car break-ins and thefts are also on the rise in town. The St. Louis Metropolitan Police reported over 485 vehicle thefts in January 2023. Whereas, the St. Louis County Police announced 136 such incidents for the same month. Just last month, FOX 2 News reported robbers operating in broad daylight with AKs and AR-15s in South St. Louis County.

Checking local forums, travel websites, and recent reviews can offer some hints into current safety conditions. Always map your travel route, and stick to well-lit and busy streets.

#2 Transportation Tips for Safety

By following some simple guidelines, you can get around St. Louis safely. The city’s public transportation system, MetroLink and MetroBus, is convenient. 

MetroLink is a light-rail network that is regarded as one of the best mass transit systems in the country. It spans over 46 miles (74.03 km) from Missouri to Illinois and has 37 station stops. The MetroBus, on the other hand, is an extensive bus system designed for short-distance travel. It covers over 70 avenues across Missouri and Illinois. 

To use them, you can use the web-based Trip Planner or download the Metro On The Go app for smartphones. When commuting, avoid empty stations and always be aware of your surroundings. If you choose ride-share providers like Uber or Lyft, verify the car and driver details before boarding. 

Check the license plate and driver’s photo to see if they match the app’s information. This small step can help prevent any unwanted incidents. If you’re renting a car, be mindful of local driving regulations and road hazards. Always park in well-lit, secure areas to minimize the possibility of break-ins or vandalism. 

St. Louis has a reputation for high traffic accident rates, so drive cautiously. In 2023, over 14,360 individuals were involved in reported car accidents. Trailnet’s 2023 Crash Report indicates over 14,285 people were injured in these accidents, among which there were 112 known fatalities.

Knowing a local contact can be helpful in the unfortunate case of a mishap. A car accident lawyer in St. Louis can provide guidance and support if you need legal assistance. If the accident isn’t your fault, expect a healthy compensation.

However, TorHoerman Law recommends hiring a trusted lawyer before talking to insurance providers or the police. A competent litigator will answer all your questions and help you with the legal processes.

#3 Personal Safety Practices

Staying alert and mindful of your environment is crucial. Avoid distractions like your phone, particularly in congested or unfamiliar places. This simple habit can help you spot potential dangers early.

Group traveling is another effective way to stay safe, especially at night. There’s safety in numbers, and it’s more enjoyable when exploring with others. Keep a record of emergency contacts with you, including local emergency services and hospitals. Knowing whom to call in an emergency can make a big difference. Save these details on your phone and keep a physical copy with you.

#4 Dealing with Unforeseen Incidents

Sometimes, incidents happen despite all due diligence. Knowing how to respond can keep you out of danger. If you are in a dangerous situation, seek a safe place immediately. 

This could be a nearby store, restaurant, or public place where you can seek help. In an emergency, don’t hesitate to contact the local authorities. Dial 911 for urgent assistance from police, fire, or medical services. If you’re involved in an accident or need legal advice, having the contact information of a St. Louis personal injury lawyer can be beneficial.

It’s also a smart idea to familiarize yourself with other emergency numbers. Keep a record of key contacts, including the closest hospital and local non-emergency police lines. This approach can save significant time during emergencies.

People Also Ask

Q1. What Are Some Common Tourist Scams to Be Aware of in St. Louis?

Be wary of anyone approaching you offering unsolicited help, tours, or “deals” on the street. It’s also best to avoid street games or gambling schemes, as these can be rigged. If something seems too good to be authentic, it certainly is. Follow your instincts and avoid unwanted interactions.

Q2. Are There Any Safety Apps or Resources That Can Be Helpful for Visitors to St. Louis?

The SLMPDMobile app provides access to crime maps, and safety tips, and allows you to report suspicious activity. You can also request city services from the Citizens’ Service Bureau. General safety apps like Noonlight can also provide a sense of safety and include elements like safety alarms and GPS tracking.

Q3. What Are the Most Dangerous Intersections in St. Louis?

St. Louis, like any city, has some intersections known for higher accident rates. Some dangerous junctions include North Grand Boulevard and Montgomery Street intersection, and the various intersections along Interstate 64, and Kingshighway Boulevard. It’s always best to exercise caution and be extra vigilant when navigating these areas.

All in all, St. Louis is a welcoming city full of charm, culture, and intrigue. By following these safety measures, you can enjoy a safe and memorable stay.

Research the neighborhoods, use transportation wisely, stay alert, and be prepared for unforeseen incidents. With these precautions in mind, you’re ready to enjoy everything the ‘Gateway to the West’ offers. Stay safe and have a great trip!

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