A national insurance group has rated the area including Greater Portland and Biddeford as one of the most secure places in the United States.

Farmers Insurance ranked the Portland-South Portland-Biddeford area as the 15th most secure place to live in the U.S. of those places with a population of 500,000 or more.

The survey was conducted by Sperling’s Best Places and took into account economic stability, crime statistics, extreme weather, risk of natural disasters, housing depreciation and foreclosures, air quality, environmental hazards, life expectancy, car crash fatalities and employment, according to the Ninth Annual Farmers Insurance Group of Companies study.

Mark Toohey, head of media relations for Farmers Insurance, commended the work of the communities in the top 20 to help keep residents safe.

“They are fortunate to have dedicated local government, law enforcement, fire, medical and education leaders who work hard and have earned the Farmers Insurance most secure large city recognition,” he said.

The company said this is the seventh time that the Portland–South Portland–Biddeford area made the top group in the Farmers study

The list released Wednesday includes:

  1.          Bethesda–Gaithersburg–Frederick, Md.

  2.          Grand Rapids–Wyoming, Mich.

  3.          Pittsburgh, Pa.                 

  4.          Austin–Round Rock, Texas

  5.          Cambridge–Newton–Framingham, Mass.

  6.          Omaha, Neb.–Council Bluffs, Iowa

  7.          San Jose–Sunnyvale–Santa Clara, Calif.

  8.          San Francisco–San Mateo–Redwood City, Calif.

  9.          Portland–Beaverton, Ore.–Vancouver, Wash.

10.         Dallas–Plano–Irving, Texas

11.         Boise City–Nampa, Idaho

12.         Madison, Wis.

13.         Minneapolis–St. Paul–Bloomington, Minn.

14.         Raleigh–Cary, N.C.

15.         Portland–South Portland–Biddeford, Maine

16.         Essex County, Mass.

17.         El Paso, Texas

18.         Honolulu, Hawaii

19.         Santa Ana–Anaheim–Irvine, Calif.

20.         Des Moines–West Des Moines, Iowa