When many people worry about getting into car accidents, they are imagining them happening on the highway, at intersections, or on roads. However, many accidents can also occur in parking lots! If you have gotten into a parking lot accident and find yourself needing legal representation, an auto accident attorney can work with you should you decide to file a claim.
However, it is important to understand how to prevent parking lot accidents so you will not find yourself in this position in the first place.
1. Strategic parking
Many accidents occur while drivers are backing out of their parking spaces. This maneuver can be more difficult than it seems and can cause damage to surrounding cars or even pedestrians if drivers become complacent and forget to take the necessary precautions while backing out their vehicle.
To avoid these sorts of accidents, drivers park strategically. For example, if you see a spot you can pull through into that would allow you to park and not have to back up out of your space, this is often a safer option than parking in a space you will eventually have to back out of.
2. Center your car
Making sure to center your car within the lines of your parking spot can be a considerable safety measure. If your car is too close to the lines on one side of the spot, you may risk damages and dents to your car.
Many people rush to park as close to their destination as possible, but to avoid door dents and other damages; some experts recommend parking farther away from your destination to have a better chance of a safe parking experience. This can also reduce traffic experienced when attempting to leave the parking lot: parking farther away can mean less traffic.
3. Distraction avoidance
Distracted driving is becoming even more common now that phones are so easily available in cars, but driving while talking to someone in the car, talking on the phone, or listening to music can lead to problems if the driver is not at the same time paying attention to the road and their surroundings.
Staying off your phone until your vehicle is parked safely is key to an accident-free parking experience. Parking requires a high level of attention and instinct to be able to execute it safely, and minimizing distractions is an easy way to increase the attention you can give to it.
Even talking on the phone while parking or exiting a parking space can be dangerous. Having both hands available and being able to devote your full attention to watching for other cars and pedestrians that might be accident hazards is the best practice for parking or leaving a space.
4. Make your intentions clear
One of the most important parts of turning into a space or backing out of a space is signaling your intentions to other drivers and pedestrians in the area. Make sure to signal before turning into a spot, so anyone in your vicinity understands what you are about to do.
If you don’t signal and make your intentions as clear as possible, another driver may attempt to turn into the space you are trying to use, which could lead to an accident.
When you are attempting to exit a parking spot, check your surroundings in all directions. Make sure the car directly behind you is not also trying to exit at the same time because most drivers only check to the sides of their rear and not directly behind them. (This is more common in busy lots where many people are attempting to exit at the same time but taking the time to double check can decrease the likelihood of the occurrence of an accident.)
If you signal your future movements with clear intentions, drivers will know what to expect and will understand to give you space.
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