MYNORTHWEST NEWS

Where Seattle ranks as a city for surviving a zombie apocalypse

Sep 4, 2023, 6:08 PM

Image: The skyline of Seattle has been seen at night with the Space Needle visible, on Dec. 12, 201...

The skyline of Seattle has been seen at night with the Space Needle visible, on Dec. 12, 2016. (Photo courtesy of Morgan Yang Photography via Smith Collection/Gado/Getty Images)

(Photo courtesy of Morgan Yang Photography via Smith Collection/Gado/Getty Images)

Despite the many, many, many (and still-coming) stories detailing zombie outbreaks and humanity’s attempts to live and battle through them, we, in this world, probably won’t have to worry about one any time soon.

But some experts say it’s not impossible.

“The unfortunate reality is that a potential zombie pandemic is more likely to happen now or in the coming decades, than at any point in human history up until now,” Dr. Hana Akselrod of the GW Medical Faculty Associates said to LawnLove as part of a larger project.

Thomas Lee, who has a PhD in epidemiology from the University of Hawaii at Manoa and still teaches there, said to LawnLove “the likelihood (of a zombie apocalypse) is higher than most would think,” noting “major advances” in some areas and in “overall medical technology.”

So, the team at LawnLove has, yet again this year, has completed research into determining where in the U.S. people have the best chance of surviving a zombie apocalypse.

This year, the city of Seattle ranked 14th out of 200. That’s up from the 2022 report, when it ranked 24th.

Portland, Oregon, finished ahead of Seattle, coming in at No. 11.

How the survival rankings were determined

In the 2023 study, LawnLove, which bills itself as “a modern, tech-enabled marketplace for lawn care services,” compared the 200 biggest U.S. cities based on five zombie survival categories: vulnerability, hideouts, supplies, protection and mobility.

Factors included in the “vulnerability” metric include rankings for share of population in bad health and hospitals per square mile. The “hideouts” metric include factors such as share of homes with basements(/bunkers) and share of homes with complete plumbing facilities. The “supplies” metric examines the number of grocery, department and hardware stores and pharmacies.

When looking at the “protection” metric, LawnLove considers the number of hunting- and outdoor-gear stores and weapons stores. The “mobility” metric includes rankings for multiple areas, with walk score, hiker and cyclist friendliness and access to marinas on the list.

As the research notes, Seattle stacks up quite well in some key metrics, including cyclist friendliness (4th best overall) and number of outdoor-gear stores (6th). It also ranks high in the share of its population in bad health (11th) and number of grocery stores (21st). But Seattle ranks just 50th in the number of homes with basements(/bunkers).

From 2022: Seattle is no longer the No. 1 bike-friendly city in the nation

Portland ranked first in the overall “mobility” metric.

Other survival-related numbers

Four other cities in the state of Washington, Spokane (38th); Tacoma (49th); Vancouver (69th); and Bellevue (76th), are in the Top 100 overall. Interestingly, all four of those cities ranked in the Top 30 overall in the 2022 report.

LawnLove completed this study in 2021 as well and three Washington cities finished in the Top 10 (Bellevue, Vancouver and Seattle).

‘Zombie debt’: Homeowners face foreclosure on old mortgages

Houston finished as the No. 1 city for zombie survival in the 2023 ranking. Rounding out the Top 5 are New York City, San Antonio, Texas, Miami and Los Angeles. As LawnLove noted, Texas is a standout state for survival as it featured three cities in the Top 10 (Houston, San Antonio and Austin finished at No. 6).

Miramar, Florida, ranked the worst in the study, Detroit and Newark, New Jersey, are notable large U.S. cities that finished in the bottom 20 of the rankings. All three cities finished low in the 2022 rankings as well.

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Where Seattle ranks as a city for surviving a zombie apocalypse