Phoenix is a sprawling area with numerous surrounding cities rounding out the Valley of the Sun. With all that space comes the need to drive and that means that countless residents are on the streets every day of the year. All of those vehicles will end up parking somewhere, at some time, so it is a good thing that many of Phoenix’s stores, restaurants, and shops have parking lots.
Parking lots are a necessary part of driving in the area but unfortunately, there are some negatives associated with these lots. The biggest safety issue is the prevalence of parking lot accidents, a problem that shows itself every week in Arizona and that causes substantial economic harm. Parking lot crashes can happen between multiple cars, between a car and a fixed object like a pole, or a car and a pedestrian. All of these situations can be serious and can lead to injuries on the part of the victims involved.
Your best bet to avoid a crash is to act in a manner that makes parking lot accidents unlikely. By taking the following steps, you will decrease your chance of becoming the victim of a collision and thereby prevent the undesirable fallout that stems from a crash:
- Choose Your Vehicle Wisely: All cars have blind spots which make driving, and in particular backing up, more difficult. But the blind spots on some vehicles are much larger than others. Vehicles with the greatest restrictions on visibility present a higher risk of being involved in a collision like a parking lot crash, so if you are shopping for a new car, consider one with limited blind spots.
- Invest in Technology: Modern cars are equipped with several safety features that can make navigating a parking lot a safer experience. The best of these options may be backup cameras which are currently an option on numerous models but will be mandatory in most instances on all cars manufactured in the coming years. Cars with backup cameras may be more expensive than those without but if the presence of a camera helps you avoid one or more collisions, you are likely to recoup the investment you made by buying a car with a camera. If a vehicle with a camera is not practical for you, consider one that has a backup alert system instead. These devices make an audible or visual alert when a vehicle is backing and an object is in its path. Some will even apply the brakes automatically to prevent a collision between a backing car and a hazard nearby.
- Avoid the Rush: Sometimes, you cannot control the time of day or the day of the week when you need to run errands. When it is possible to plan, consider avoiding the busiest times at whatever location you plan to frequent. Doing so will mean that the parking lots will be less crowded, you will have an easier time parking, and other motorists are likely to be more patient and less rushed, limiting your odds of a crash.
- Pick Your Spot: If a parking spot is open and it is in an inconvenient location, consider looking for a different spot that is more out of the way. Leaving space around your vehicle when you park makes it less likely that someone will strike your car and the space will increase your visibility when it is time to leave.
- Do Not Cross Lanes: Often, people skip the rules when it comes to driving in a parking lot and they instead drive in any manner they see fit. This is dangerous and should not be done. Instead, follow the rules by driving up and down marked lanes, signaling your intent to turn, and driving on the right. Keep your speed low and never cross lanes except where authorized to avoid a crash with a motorist in another area of the parking lot.
Unfortunately, even if you do everything right, you may still find yourself the victim of a parking lot car accident. If that happens to you and you are injured, know that you may have the right to seek compensation for your damages through a civil claim.
Call the personal injury lawyers at Abels & Annes, P.C. toll free at (855) PHX-LAWYER or locally at (602) 819-5191 and let one of our attorneys give you a no-cost, no-obligation case consultation about your crash. We are standing by 24/7 to take your call so please do not hesitate to call us now.
Prior Blog Entry:
Distracted Driving: The Number 1 Cause of Phoenix Car Accidents, Phoenix Injury Lawyer Blog, published January 6, 2016.