What is safer--general or epidural?

Both safe. Both are safe in general. Your health and the type of surgery are what dictates which is best for you.
Depends on situation. Both general anesthesia and epidural anesthesia have risks and benefits. In obstetrics, epidural anesthesia has a long record of safety for labor and c-section. In other types of surgery, general anesthesia may be preferable for a number of reasons. Consult an anesthesiologist for information about your specific situation. Both types of anesthesia are safe in experienced hands.