Photo Credits: JUSTIN HAN / AGGIE
Police, fire departments work to keep city safe
In light of several recent events — such as school being canceled due to poor air quality from deadly fires in nearby counties, or the failure of the WarnMe system — individuals took necessary actions to ensure the safety of Davis and its residents. Police officers and firefighters alike, among others, worked around the clock while Davis was greatly tested, which led to the inclusion of Davis in a recently compiled list of the top 50 safest cities in California. Davis ranked 33rd this year.
According to a report completed by SafeWise, the size of the population and FBI uniform crimes reported were the factors taken into account when placing the cities in order of safety.
“Our rankings are based on the number of reported violent crimes (aggravated assault, murder, rape, and robbery) in each city. If there was a tie, we also factored in the number of property crimes (burglary, arson, larceny-theft, and motor vehicle theft),” SafeWise staff said in a statement, according to The Daily Democrat.
The staff also commented on how particular crimes are compared to others based on, for example, severity and giving precedence to violent crimes over property ones. Violent crimes usually result in physical harm and are feared more than a crime which causes an economic impact.
Using its most recent available records, which included all crimes reported in 2017, Safewise also concurred that 60 percent of the safest cities were in southern California and 40 percent in northern California. Nonetheless, Danville was named the “safest city” in California.
“I think what helps make Davis a safe place is the fact that our campus is one of the few college campuses with both a fire and police department, along with the city of Davis departments,” said Jack Gordon, the senior resident firefighter for the UC Davis Fire Department. “This allows for fast emergency response times throughout the city and the campus, which create a safe and friendly environment.”
Davis utilizes students’ abilities to perform functions outside the classroom, offering a student firefighting program to allow those who are interested to be exposed to fire safety and learn what it takes to become a firefighter. Students who choose this route can become more aware of how to avoid starting a structural fire, which is more common in California than any other state.
“The UC Davis Fire Department also has a student firefighting program and an EMT program, and the police department also has a cadet program in which a lot of students participate, which allows for educated individuals in either law enforcement, fire suppression or medical emergencies to be spread out throughout the campus on a daily basis, which can help out in a situation [that] calls for it,” Gordon said.
Members of Davis City Council expressed why they believed Davis was included in the top 50 safest cities.
“Every city has crime to deal with, including Davis, but we are safer than most cities because of the smart and effective policing approach of our police department, and the caring and supportive nature of our community,” said councilmember Dan Carson. “We watch out for each other and it shows.”
UC Davis Police Chief Joe Farrow gave advice on how the police department and community should work to maintain security and foster a safer environment for students and residents in the city.
“Safety is the responsibility of everyone in the community, not just the police,” Farrow said. “In our department, we always strive to build good relationships and work with our campus community, as well as with our colleagues in the City of Davis Police Department and other local law enforcement agencies. It’s important to remember that crime happens anywhere, even in a ‘safe’ community. However, there are simple things we can all do to avoid being a victim — be aware of your surroundings, don’t leave laptops and other valuables unattended, lock your doors and windows.”
Written by: Lauren Tropio — firstname.lastname@example.org