Surfside Beach ranks as No. 48 on S.C. safest cities study - WMBFNews.com, Myrtle Beach/Florence SC, Weather

Surfside Beach ranks as No. 48 on S.C. safest cities study

SURFSIDE BEACH, SC (WMBF) - Surfside Beach ended up on a list that most cities do not end up on.

A website called Safewise.com called Surfside Beach one of the safest cities in South Carolina for 2016.

SafeWise is a community-focused safety organization that strives to increase community safety, education, awareness and preparedness. To create the list Safewise.com paired research with the most recent FBI crime reports. A city has to have a population with more than 2,000 residents to meet the criteria for both violent and property crimes.

Although the rankings have changed, Surfside Beach is one of many cities that rose up in the rankings and made it on the list.

Surfside Beach ranks No. 48, outranking both Florence and Myrtle Beach. But this year, law enforcement said the location does’t matter due to the attention for safety this summer starting now.

Also, with the peak time for tourism starting on Easter Sunday and ending near Labor Day, officials said it’s a blend of law enforcement and community efforts to help serve and protect.

Surfside Beach police officials said although they're happy with being higher on the list, they're embracing the opportunity for growth.

“We’re very pleased, we’re very honored but we're not satisfied," said Surfside Beach Police Chief Rodney Keziah. "We’re working really hard and we hope next year we'll be up higher on that list.”

Police officials said this study is reality and they plan to continue to enforce safety and keep a strong hold on crime in the area.

Unfortunately, for residents and vacationers, both violent and property crimes have been increasing over the past few years.

With Surfside Beach being one of the most popular places to vacation in the area, law enforcement said they need the community's help to make sure they keep moving higher in the rankings.

“We're starting some neighborhood watch programs for anyone that’s interested to get that information out of how to be aware of crimes that may be in progress and how to report crimes," said Keziah.

The Surfside Beach Police Department will host an annual "Coffee with a Cop" and "Citizens Police Academy” for the community to get a better understanding on how to get involved.

Those interested in attending should contact the police department at (843) 913-6368.

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