When you think about a car accident, you might envision highways, major damage, and injuries. However, despite slow speed limits, many accidents happen in parking lots. In fact, the National Safety Council (NSC) reported that one in out five car accidents happen in parking lots, with over 50,000 parking lot and garage accidents per year.
Because of the slower speeds, a parking lot accident rarely leads to serious damage. However, serious injuries can certainly happen, particularly in pedestrians. The NSC found that there is an average of 500 people killed in parking lot accidents every year.
Many drivers put their guard down when traversing through a parking lot or garage. After driving through traffic, pulling into a parking lot may feel like a completely different environment. This may lead to a loss of focus. A report by CBS News found that over two-thirds of drivers feel comfortable to make a phone call in a parking lot, with over 50 percent saying it is okay to text. With the amount of cars and pedestrians in a parking lot, a driver who is not paying attention will likely get into an accident.
The most common causes of parking lot accidents include:
- Two drivers backing into one another while leaving a spot.
- Pulling out of a space and backing into a car.
- Two cars vying for the same spot.
- Distracted driving, i.e. the use of smartphones.
Here are a few safety tips to follow when driving through a parking lot:
It is important to follow the speed limit in a parking lot. Be very cautious and drive as if other cars cannot see you, and give them the right-of-way.
In addition, do not rush when getting out of a spot. Move slow and make sure to check your surroundings before reversing.
Avoid the phone until your vehicle is parked and at a complete stop. The majority of parking lot accidents happen because of distractions, even if the cars are traveling at slow speeds.
Always obey the traffic signs in a parking lot, particularly stop and yield signs, and always stop at crosswalks.
Keep a Safe Distance
Try not to park near the doors where most cars are going to park. Park further away from groups of cars, and leave enough space between your car and others to avoid any carts or other cars hitting you. If possible, find a pull through spot so you do not have to reverse out of your spot.
Use Safety Devices
Many cars nowadays come equipped with backup cameras, while others have parking sensors. Be sure to have them on, but check your mirrors and do not solely rely on technology.
Who Could Be At Fault for a Parking Lot Accident?
Determining fault in a parking lot accident may be difficult. Many accidents are due to driver error, meaning one or both drivers may be at fault. If you have been involved in any accident, consider contacting a car accident lawyer first before speaking with any insurance companies.
West Chester Car Accident Lawyers at the Law Office of Deborah M. Truscello Help Those Critically Injured in Parking Lot Accidents
If you have been involved in a parking lot accident and have been injured, you may be entitled to compensation. Contact one of our West Chester car accident lawyers at the Law Office of Deborah M. Truscello. Call us at (610) 892-4940 or fill out our online form for a free consultation. Located in Media, Pennsylvania, we proudly serve clients in Bucks County, Chester County, Delaware County, Lancaster, Montgomery County, Norristown, Philadelphia, Reading, and West Chester.