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Five Good Reasons to Not Visit Los Angeles as City Boosters Brag of a Record 41 Million Tourists

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Wed, Jan 16, 2013 at 9:43 AM

click to enlarge Downtown, Los Angeles (Seems innocent enough, right?) - COURTESY OF CHANNONE
  • Courtesy of Channone
  • Downtown, Los Angeles (Seems innocent enough, right?)

The Los Angeles Tourism Board announced that a record 41.4 million people flew, drove, took the train or otherwise traveled to Los Angeles for work and play in 2012. Los Angeles is celebrated as the place to be, with lots of new visitors -- in particular, the Chinese -- streaming into the city.

We're not sure those numbers from official city boosters are entirely accurate. But if they are, we're not sure why the throngs are heading here. So if you're thinking about visiting, here are the Top Five reasons you might want to dial back your excitement. Maybe go to Hawaii instead.

click to enlarge The Evil Bedbug - COURTESY OF GILLES SAN MARTIN
  • Courtesy of Gilles San Martin
  • The Evil Bedbug
1. Bed Bugs: Come on down to Los Angeles, where the bed bugs are ready to suck your blood, cling to your clothes and ride home with you to foreign lands or neighboring states. Los Angeles has 403 bed bug reports involving hotels citywide. These little blood-suckers are worse than your in-laws and a lot less likely to leave. To combat them, when you pack your suitcase, stuff dryer sheets in every pocket and don't put your clothes in any drawer at any hotel -- ever. Then, chances of encountering these hellish creatures may be slightly lessened but not eliminated.

click to enlarge Hit & Run Victim - COURTESY OF JSEATTLE
  • Courtesy of JSeattle
  • Hit & Run Victim
2.Hit-and Run Capital of the World: Imagine you just get off the plane and are headed into the streets in your rental car when ... BAM! You get hit by a driver with no insurance, or who's unlicensed or drunk, and when you wake up surrounded by people snapping pictures of you through the windshield with their iPhones, they inform you that the driver sped away. But they were too busy posting pictures of you on Facebook to get the license plate number. Sounds far-fetched, but really it's not. As L.A. Weekly reported in its investigative report Hit-and-Run Epidemic, Los Angeles has a mind-numbing 20,000 hit-and-run crashes every year, 50% of all accidents. Nationwide, the hit-and-run crash rate is only 11% of all accidents. And the Insurance Research Council estimates that in Los Angeles, 1 out of 6 drivers are uninsured. Good luck with your rental company policy. It might be safer to go rafting down the Mississippi River.

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