Skin Cancer Cities: San Diego, Phoenix, Sacramento: Daily Beast Ranks Worst

The Daily Beast crunches the numbers to find out which cities have the highest melanoma rate.

MIKE BLAKE

Jeremy Maude / Getty Images

20 Sunburn Capitals

Ah, summer—the days are long and warm, and people flock outdoors to soak up the bright sunshine. But as important as it is to get out and enjoy barbecues and cool off in the pool, it’s equally important to comprehensively apply sun block. After just five sunburns the risk of melanoma doubles, according to The Skin Cancer Foundation.

But some parts of the country, it turns out, are more likely to have residents develop or die from skin cancer, so The Daily Beast decided to take a look at the most recent available data to find out where the risk of melanoma is the greatest.

We first took into account the mean number of clear summer days in the 100 biggest cities in America for which there was data from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Then we factored in the rates of melanoma incidence and deaths from melanoma per 100,000 people for each city’s surrounding county, using 2003-2007 data from the National Cancer Institute. Each datapoint was weighted equally.

This summer, be sure to stay cool and in the shade when possible—especially in these cities.

Boise, ID

Population: 205,707
Avg. clear summer days: 51
Melanoma deaths (per 100,000): 3.9
Melanoma incidence (per 100,000): 27.3

Stephen Saks

Amarillo, TX

Population: 189,392
Avg. clear summer days: 51
Melanoma deaths (per 100,000): 3.55
Melanoma incidence (per 100,000): 21.75

Bakersfield, CA

Population: 324,463
Avg. clear summer days: 75
Melanoma deaths (per 100,000): 3.6
Melanoma incidence (per 100,000): 16.8

Salt Lake City, UT

Population: 183,102
Avg. clear summer days: 47
Melanoma deaths (per 100,000): 2.9
Melanoma incidence (per 100,000): 27.1

MIKE BLAKE

San Diego, CA

Population: 1,306,300
Avg. clear summer days: 37
Melanoma deaths (per 100,000): 3.2
Melanoma incidence (per 100,000): 29.1

David McNew

Sacramento, CA

Population: 466,676
Avg. clear summer days: 75
Melanoma deaths (per 100,000): 2.4
Melanoma incidence (per 100,000): 19.2

Oklahoma City, OK

Population: 560,333
Avg. clear summer days: 44
Melanoma deaths (per 100,000): 3
Melanoma incidence (per 100,000): 21.2

Matt Slocum

Phoenix, AZ

Population: 1,593,659
Avg. clear summer days: 58
Melanoma deaths (per 100,000): 2.8
Melanoma incidence (per 100,000): 17.1

Wichita, KS

Population: 372,186
Avg. clear summer days: 41
Melanoma deaths (per 100,000): 3
Melanoma incidence (per 100,000): 19.9*

 

*Statewide death rate

Spokane, WA

Population: 203,268
Avg. clear summer days: 38
Melanoma deaths (per 100,000): 2.8
Melanoma incidence (per 100,000): 22.7

Tulsa, OK

Population: 389,625
Avg. clear summer days: 40
Melanoma deaths (per 100,000): 2.9
Melanoma incidence (per 100,000): 19.7

Colorado Springs, CO

Population: 399,827
Avg. clear summer days: 29
Melanoma deaths (per 100,000): 3.2
Melanoma incidence (per 100,000): 26.2

Albuquerque, NM

Population: 529,219
Avg. clear summer days: 42
Melanoma deaths (per 100,000): 2.4
Melanoma incidence (per 100,000): 19.9

Seattle, WA

Population: 616,627
Avg. clear summer days: 29
Melanoma deaths (per 100,000): 2.7
Melanoma incidence (per 100,000): 26.6

Tucson, AZ

Population: 543,910
Avg. clear summer days: 43
Melanoma deaths (per 100,000): 2.9
Melanoma incidence (per 100,000): 15.4

Fresno, CA

Population: 479,918
Avg. clear summer days: 76
Melanoma deaths (per 100,000): 2.2
Melanoma incidence (per 100,000): 14.5

RICH PEDRONCELLI

Stockton, CA

Population: 287,578
Avg. clear summer days: 75
Melanoma deaths (per 100,000): 2.3
Melanoma incidence (per 100,000): 13.5

Portland, OR

Population: 566,143
Avg. clear summer days: 30
Melanoma deaths (per 100,000): 2.6
Melanoma incidence (per 100,000): 21.8

Lubbock, TX

Population: 225,859
Avg. clear summer days: 43
Melanoma deaths (per 100,000): 3
Melanoma incidence (per 100,000): 13.5

Austin, TX

Population: 786,386
Avg. clear summer days: 32
Melanoma deaths (per 100,000): 2.4
Melanoma incidence (per 100,000): 19.3