Mother Nature has various ways of reminding us who is in charge. The particular threats and the extent of risk vary greatly based on where you live [See Top 10 US Threats].
While there is no easy way to gauge overall risk of disaster, researchers love to try. One recent study found that in general, the world's population is migrating to coastal areas, where the threat of hurricanes and flooding from rising seas are now well known. Another study found that Americans are following this same deadly trend.
And anyone who lives in California knows that heading for the hills doesn't solve anything, since the very ground under your feet can give way at any time. Residents of the Midwest have their own twisted concerns.
A web site called SustainLane.com each year puts America's 50 largest cities into a natural disaster index with its Sustainable U.S. City Ranking.
At the top of the list are cities relatively immune to the brunt of nature. Near the bottom are those in the cross hairs of hurricanes, tornadoes, earthquakes, tsunamis or some other force to be reckoned with.
This year's list (*=tie):
1. Mesa, AZ*