Is Florence, South Carolina Safe? (Crime Rates And Crime Stats)


If you are thinking about visiting Florence and have some qualms about the safety of the city, we got you covered.

We are going to deep dive into the statistics, look at some maps, graphs and talk to the residents of the city to give you a better understanding of how safe Florence really is.

Is Florence, South Carolina Safe To Visit?

Statistically speaking, Florence is a unsafe place to visit. In 2020, Florence had a violent crime rate of 1,408.56 per 100,000 people.

Florence’s violent crime rate is 3.5x greater than the national average, its property crime rate is more than 3x greater than the national average and its murder rate is 4.6x greater than the national average.

Here’s a chart that gives you some perspective on the violent crime rate of Florence:

florence south carolina safety score

Florence, South Carolina Crime Stats

Here’s a breakdown of all the crimes in the city for 2020 compared to 2019:

2019

2020

% + OR –

Homicide

7

12

71%

Rape

32

15

-53%

Robbery

58

72

24%

Aggravated Assault

353

463

31%

Burglary

389

322

-17%

Larceny-Theft

1,910

1,812

-5%

Motor Vehicle Theft

199

256

29%

Arson

4

2

-50%

TOTAL

2,952

2,954

0.1%

**All data is from the FBI UCR**

Florence’s Violent Crime Stats

In 2020 Florence reported 562 violent crimes and had a violent crime rate of 1,408.56 per 100,000 people.

  • The national average for violent crime is 398.5 per 100,000 residents. Florence’s violent crime rate is 3.5x greater than the national average.
  • Florence’s violent crime rate is 2.7x greater than the state average.
  • Year over year violent crime has increased by 25%.
  • Florence’s violent crime rate is on par with cities like Baltimore, New Orleans and Kansas City.

Here’s a map showing you how violent crimes have trended in Florence over a 30 year period.

  • Violent crime peaked in 1999 when Florence reported 668 violent crimes and had a violent crime rate of 2,154.84 per 100,000 people
  • Violent crime has decreased 16% from its peak from 1999.

violent crimes in florence south carolina

*Violent crimes include; homicides, rape, robbery and aggravated assaults and the violent crime rate is calculated by dividing the number of reported crimes by the total population; the result is multiplied by 100,000.

Florence’s Property Crime Stats

In 2020 Florence reported 2,390 property crimes and had a property crime rate of 5,990.13 per 100,000 people.

  • The national average for property crime is 1958.2 per 100,000 residents. Florence’s property crime rate is roughly 3.1x greater than the national average.
  • Florence’s property crime rate is roughly 2.2x greater than the state average.
  • Year over year property crime in Florence has decreased by 5%.
  • Florence has a similar property crime rate to St. Louis, Oakland and Baton Rouge.

Here’s a map showing you how property crimes have trended in Florence over a 30 year period.

  • Property crime peaked in 2000 when Florence reported 3,826 property crimes and had a property crime rate of roughly 12,341.94 per 100,000 people
  • Property crime has decreased 38% from its peak from 2000.

property crimes in florence south carolina

*Property crimes include; burglary, larceny-theft, motor vehicle theft, and arson and property crime rate is calculated by dividing the number of reported crimes by the total population; the result is multiplied by 100,000.

Florence’s Murder Stats

In 2020, Florence reported 12 homicides, which is a 71% increase from 2020.

  • Florence homicide rate in 2020 was roughly 30.08 per 100,000 people.
  • Florence has a similar homicide rate to Cleveland, Kansas City and Dayton.
  • Florence’s murder rate is 4.6x greater than the national average.
  • Florence’s murder rate is 2.9x greater than the state average.

Here’s a map showing you how homicides have trended in Florence over a 30 year period.

  • 2020 was Florence’s deadliest year on record.

homicides in florence south carolina

Florence vs Other Cities In South Carolina

Here’s a graph showing you the violent crime rates of the 11 most populous cities in South Carolina. Florence had the highest violent crime rate of all the cities.

violent crime rates of cities in south carolina

City

Population

Violent Crime

1. Florence

39,899

1408.56

2. Spartanburg

38,732

1383.87

3. North Florence

114,852

1171.07

4. Sumter

43,463

1129.70

5. Columbia

136,632

725.31

6. Greenville

70,720

709.84

7. Rock Hill

74,372

665.57

8. Charleston

150,227

432.68

9. Summerville

50,915

359.42

10. Goose Creek

45,946

261.18

11. Mount Pleasant

90,801

103.52

Florence, South Carolina vs The Most Dangerous Cities in the United States

Here’s a list of the top 18 most dangerous cities in the United States ranked by violent crime rates. Florence’s violent crime rate is 1.7x less than Memphis, the most dangerous city on the list.

florence vs most dangerous cities in the us

City

Number of violent crimes in 2020

Violent Crime Rate

Memphis

15,310

2,418.24

Detroit

14,370

2,248.44

St. Louis

6,017

1,995.17

Little Rock

3,657

1,805.11

South Bend

1,765

1,706.09

Cleveland

6,294

1,689.10

Milwaukee

9,407

1,629.70

Birmingham

3,166

1,577.22

Kansas City

7,919

1,558.58

Lansing

1,699

1,508.29

Springfield

2,545

1,504.35

Baltimore

8,552

1,404.20

San Bernardino

3,033

1,365.59

New Orleans

5,215

1,358.08

Albuquerque

7,552

1,337.68

Oakland

5,653

1,282.89

Stockton

4,023

1,254.04

Is Florence, South Carolina safe from hurricanes?

Florence is not completely safe from hurricanes and is something you have to take into consideration when visiting. Although coastal cities are more vulnerable, hurricanes can travel up to 200 miles inland. However, once a hurricane moves inland it rapidly weakens to a tropical storm (40-75mph winds).

When is hurricane season in Florence?

Hurricane season in Florence officially runs from June 1 to Nov. 30. The peak of hurricane season is mid-August to mid-October.

Is it safe to visit Florence during hurricane season?

It is safe to visit Florence during hurricane season, as long as you don’t visit when a hurricane is about to hit! Fortunately there is usually adequate warning when a hurricane is brewing in the area.

Check out https://www.nhc.noaa.gov before you visit. This is your best resource for tracking and monitoring storms. Another great website to check out is https://spaghettimodels.com.

Is Florence, South Carolina safe from tornadoes?

Florence is not safe from tornadoes and is susceptible to them and is something you have to take into consideration when visiting.

South Carolina has averaged 11 tornadoes each year since 1950 and most often occur from March to May, according to the South Carolina Emergency Management Division

Is Florence in tornado alley?

Charleston is not in tornado alley. The states of Texas, Louisiana, Arkansas, Oklahoma, Kansas, South Dakota, Iowa and Nebraska are consider part of tornado alley. A study of tornadoes that occurred between 1921–1995 concluded almost 1/4 of all significant tornadoes occur in this area.

What do residents of Florence say about it’s safety?

  1. "Florence has steadily declined over the past 15 years. It’s not safe to be anywhere after dark."
  2. "Its not bad and it isn’t. It’s boring though."
  3. "Crime reports online are similar to all other news: sensationalized. There are plenty of peaceful neighborhoods.

Is Florence safe for women?

While there are no guarantees, Florence is generally safe for female solo travelers as long as you learn the layout of the city, avoid problem areas, stay in well lit/well populated areas and avoid walking by yourself at night.

Is Florence safe at night?

Florence is safe at night as long as you stay away from the sketchy neighborhoods mentioned above. You should be able to mitigate your chances of being a victim if you study the layout of the city and avoid areas where crime is high.

Streets and squares that are perfectly safe in the day can be questionable at night. Stay where the tourists go during the day and avoid any places that are outside normal pedestrian areas at night.

Is Florence’s tap water safe to drink?

The tap water in Florence, South Carolina is safe to drink. From Oct. 31, 2018 to Dec. 31, 2021, Florence only had 0 health violations.

While the tap water in Florence meets the EPA health guidelines, it can still contain contaminants present in trace amounts that could potentially cause health issues over the long-run.

If you have any concerns about the tap water in Florence, we suggest that you use bottle water for your drinking needs.

Tips to stay safe while visiting Florence, South Carolina

  • Learn the layout of the city and figure out which areas you should avoid. Book your accommodations accordingly.
  • Save the sight seeing for the daytime. At night the situation can drastically change in certain neighborhoods.
  • Always be aware of your surroundings. That means to keep your ears and eyes open. Keep your headphones off and don’t scroll aimlessly through your phone.
  • Always listen to your gut and trust your instincts. If a situation feels unsafe or if you feel uncomfortable, even if you don’t know why, leave. Don’t stick around to find out.
  • Map your route before you leave. Don’t just jump in the car, set the GPS and drive. You need to know where you are going and what you are going through.
  • Don’t walk by yourself at night.
  • Don’t leave any valuables in your car.
  • Always park in a well-lit or secure area.

12 Things to Know About Florence, South Carolina

  1. Florence is named after South Carolina’s Militia General W.W. Harlee’s daughter (Florence)
  2. Florence is known for it’s past as being an old railroad depot.
  3. Florence’s original city limits formed a circle with a 1 mile radius. You can still see traces of the circular outline on city maps. The Florence city limits know encompasses 19.8 square miles.
  4. The city of Florence has a population of about 40,000 people.
  5. Florence was once the denture capital of America.
  6. The city of Florence has 14 parks/recreation areas that encompasses 600 acres.
  7. Florence is a large producer of pecans, cotton, soybeans, peanuts, tobacco and peaches.
  8. Otis Elevator, GE MRI, Honda ATVs, QVC, FedEx, Nucor steel, and many more companies have manufacturing factories in Florence, because of its location between I-95 and I-20
  9. One of Florence’s best known intersections is called “Five Points”.
  10. Florence is also known for Francis ‘Swamp Fox’ Marion, a military officer who served in the American Revolutionary War Swamp Fox. Francis Marion University is named after him
  11. On March 11, 1958, an Air Force bomber dropped a nuclear weapon on a farm right outside of Florence. The payload either wasn’t loaded in the warhead or didn’t detonate — the stories differ.
  12. The Florence Fire Department’s oldest working fire truck is 89 years old.

A Few Things You Should Do While Visiting Florence According To Locals

things to do in florence south carolina

Quick Facts About Florence, South Carolina

 

Florence, South Carolina

United States

Population, Census, April 1, 2020

39,899

331,449,281

Population, Census, April 1, 2010

37,056

308,745,538

Persons under 5 years, percent

6.8%

6.0%

Persons under 18 years, percent

24.4%

22.3%

Persons 65 years and over, percent

18.9%

16.5%

Female persons, percent

54.8%

50.8%

Black or African American alone, percent

47.6%

13.4%

American Indian and Alaska Native alone, percent

0.5%

1.3%

Asian alone, percent

2.3%

5.9%

Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander alone, percent

0.3%

0.2%

Two or More Races, percent

1.5%

2.8%

Hispanic or Latino, percent

2.1%

18.5%

White alone, not Hispanic or Latino, percent

46.4%

60.1%

Foreign born persons, percent, 2015-2019

4.4%

13.6%

Owner-occupied housing unit rate, 2015-2019

58.5%

64.0%

Median value of owner-occupied housing units, 2015-2019

$158,600.00

$217,500.00

Median selected monthly owner costs -with a mortgage, 2015-2019

$1,239.00

$1,595.00

Median selected monthly owner costs -without a mortgage, 2015-2019

$370.00

$500.00

Median gross rent, 2015-2019

$780.00

$1,062.00

Households, 2015-2019

15,624

120,756,048

Language other than English spoken at home, percent of persons age 5 years+, 2015-2019

3.9%

21.6%

Households with a computer, percent, 2015-2019

84.7%

90.3%

Households with a broadband Internet subscription, percent, 2015-2019

74.5%

82.7%

High school graduate or higher, percent of persons age 25 years+, 2015-2019

89.2%

88.0%

Bachelor’s degree or higher, percent of persons age 25 years+, 2015-2019

31.3%

32.1%

Persons  without health insurance, under age 65 years, percent

11.5%

10.2%

In civilian labor force, total, percent of population age 16 years+, 2015-2019

61.0%

63.0%

In civilian labor force, female, percent of population age 16 years+, 2015-2019

57.6%

58.3%

Median household income (in 2019 dollars), 2015-2019

$49,525.00

$62,843.00

Per capita income in past 12 months (in 2019 dollars), 2015-2019

$30,530.00

$34,103.00

Persons in poverty, percent

19.1%

11.4%

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Mariska Lee

Mariska is a recovering attorney who gave up her professional job to discover new perspectives of life while traveling in a 2009 Ford Transit. She has been living the van life for 3 years and has not looked back since.

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