Park Assist Technology Can Still Cause Accidents

1415(2)To many people in Phoenix, it is comforting to know that they drive a new, top-of-the line vehicle with all the safety features one can imagine. After all, the better the technology inside a car, the more likely they are to avoid a car accident – or so they like to believe. In truth, the presence or absence of safety devices and advanced technology is not likely to be the sole factor in whether a collision takes place. Instead, it is usually the contentious or negligent conduct of a motorist that determines the likelihood of a collision, and not technology on its own.

This is true even where technology seems to take complete control over a routine driving task. Currently, a number of vehicles offer park assist technology as a standard or an optional feature on newer cars and some that have been manufactured in the last decade. This type of technology allows a driver to parallel park her vehicle without controlling the car. Instead, when the feature is activated, a series of sensors around the front, rear, and side of the vehicle will turn on and will detect how far a vehicle is from other obstacles, including other parked cars. The vehicle will then back up as necessary and move into a parking space by coordinating the view from the sensors with the car’s steering capabilities and gas and brake pedals.

This technology can be a great feature and can make it much easier to park a vehicle in busy and congested areas, including those in and around Maricopa County. But as it is not a fool proof tool; errors can still happen and collisions can still take place.

First, manufacturers and safety experts state that everyone who utilizes park assist and similar features on a car must first check that it is safe to park. At no time can a motorist rely completely upon the technology as a human review of the surroundings is always necessary. Second, understand how your vehicle works if using a park assist feature. Many will make an audible noise if an object is detected in the car’s path and some will vibrate. If that is the case, always heed these warnings and investigate the issue before you continue parking. Other vehicles will apply the brakes if something is detected in the intended parking space. If this feature exists in your car and can be manually overridden, never override it unless you are confident it is safe to proceed. If necessary and safe, exit your car to get a complete view of the hazard, if any, before you continue to park.

Finally, it is important to know that if you fail to act in a safe manner while parking your car, you may be held liable for any injuries that result. Therefore, if you strike a bicyclist, a pedestrian, or another vehicle, the laws in Arizona may impose liability on you and you may be forced to pay for the damages that result. In a typical incident, this can include medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, disfigurement, permanency of injuries, and any other harm that happens.

If you have been the victim of a parking accident that happened when a driver was acting negligently, call the personal injury lawyers at Abels & Annes, P.C. today and let us provide you with a free case consultation without obligation. We have an attorney available 24 hours a day, seven days a week to take your call and to offer you a free case consultation about your accident. There is no obligation on your part for speaking with us and if we represent you, we will not charge you a fee unless we successfully make a recovery on your behalf. You can reach us toll free at (855) PHX-LAWYER or locally at (602) 819-5191 to talk about your accident and your rights for relief.

Prior Blog Entry:

Celebrating New Year’s Eve Safely in Phoenix, Phoenix Injury Lawyer Blog, published December 31, 2015.