THANK YOU TO TRI-STATE RAIL NEWS FOR THIS INFO: Start spreading the news: New York's subway system may be the safest in the nation. A Daily News analysis of the seven largest comparable subways in the country found that Big Apple riders are less likely to be crime victims than their counterparts in Washington, San Francisco, Boston and other hubs. And the Transit Authority's sprawling network is the only one of the seven - excluding the Port Authority's PATH - that has all its lines running 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Based on an average weekday ridership of 4.5 million, the subway system sees about 65 crimes per 100,000 riders. PATH, which runs in New York and New Jersey, is the second safest - with just 68 crimes per 100,000 riders. Boston ranks third, followed by Chicago, San Francisco's Bay Area Rapid Transit, the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority network and the Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority system. "We're pleased that the Daily News has confirmed by its own survey that the teamwork between the Metropolitan Transportation Authority and the NYPD's Transit Bureau ensures that we have the safest system around," MTA Chairman Peter Kalikow said. The MTA is the parent agency of the TA, which runs the buses and subways in New York. Killings on the rails or in stations are rare all around with just seven total this year on all of the systems. Grand larceny - stealth crimes most often committed by pickpockets and described as the taking of property without force - were the most prevalent crimes reported. The various transportation authorities and the police departments in charge of security for their networks provided the crime and ridership statistics used for the analysis. Some had different definitions for assault - Boston, for example, included misdemeanors, while New York counts only felonies. Others were somewhat vague with their information. A BART spokesman said some of its crimes occurred in parking lots, but he could not say how many. Subway crime in the city is down about 13% this year and is at its lowest level in decades. Police have credited a crackdown on fare beaters; fare evasion arrests are up about 23%.