Can Pennsylvania Take on the Zombie Apocalypse?

By Hope Walborn | Oct. 26, 2023 | 2 min. read

For fans of The Walking Dead, have you ever wondered how safe you’d be in Pennsylvania in the event of a zombie outbreak? Lawn Love ranked 2023’s Best Cities for Surviving a Zombie Apocalypse and, out of 200 of the biggest U.S. cities, Pittsburgh and Philadelphia ranked No. 19 and No. 22 respectively.

The ranking was based on important survival factors including vulnerability, hideouts, supplies, protection and mobility. Each factor was weighted on a scale of one to five based on importance. Each city was then ranked in each category and scored overall on a 100-point scale.

Vulnerability took into account each city’s population density, physical inactivity rate, share of people in bad health, military base access, natural hazards and amount of hospitals and urgent care clinics.

The hideouts category considered each city’s share of homes with basements/bunkers, complete kitchen facilities and complete plumbing facilities. It also accounted for the state’s off-grid lifestyle friendliness.

Let’s be honest, supplies are important in any apocalyptic scene. This category counted the number of supermarkets, grocery stores, convenience stores, shopping centers/department stores, pharmacies/drug stores and hardware stores.

And you’ll need weapons to defend yourself. Protection accounted for the number of hunting gear stores, weapons and ammunition stores, outdoor gear stores, shooting ranges and firearm training facilities in each city.

Lastly, if you want to survive the undead, you’ll need to be able to get around well. The mobility category took into account each city’s walk score, cycle friendliness and hiker friendliness.

While no cities in Pennsylvania landed in the top 10 this year, Pittsburgh and Philly ranked considerably high on the list, falling in the top 11%.

At No. 19 with an overall score of 43.15 points, Pittsburgh, which was ranked No. 9 last year, ranked 6 in vulnerability, 83 in hideouts, 33 in supplies, 69 in protection and 11 in mobility. Maybe Pittsburgh’s higher ranking is due to the nearby Monroeville Mall, where the 1978 film Dawn of the Dead was filmed.

Following just behind, Philly landed at No. 22 with an overall score of 42.47 and ranked 58 in vulnerability, 94 in hideouts, 19 in supplies, 75 in protection and 9 in mobility.

The top three cities most likely to survive a zombie apocalypse were Houston, New York and San Antonio.

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