Parking lots pose a variety of safety hazards for both drivers and pedestrians. While it’s impossible to avoid crowded parking areas, there are some common practices that will reduce the risk of being in an accident. We want you to be safe, especially during this busy time of year. This list provides practical advice on ways to avoid causing accidents and how to watch out for other drivers.
Many accidents are the result of distracted drivers who reach for their cell phone, turn their attention to children or otherwise take their attention away from driving. Avoid doing anything before coming to a complete stop and turning the vehicle off, including unbuckling seat belts prematurely. It’s a good idea to turn the radio down or off before entering busy parking areas to remain alert to surrounding sounds.
With tensions high during summer time shopping season, drivers often cause accidents by attempting to beat one another to prime parking spots. This is very dangerous because as drivers speed to reach a spot they don’t pay attention to their surroundings. Speeding cars can inadvertently hit other cars that are backing out or hit pedestrians that step out into the lane. We suggest parking farther out to avoid other aggressive drivers who insist on putting you and others in danger.
Choose the Safest Spots
Sometimes the best parking spots aren’t necessarily the most convenient, but they are the safest. Avoid parking in the very first or last spot on an aisle. They may be convenient to pull into but vehicles in these spots are more likely to be involved in an accident from the main flow of traffic. Additionally, those with children should opt for spots that are as far away from congested areas as possible. While walking long distances with little ones may not be fun, getting them in and out of the vehicle without traffic zooming around is much easier and safer.
Our number one safety suggestion is to stay alert to what is going on around you. While walking, never dart in between cars or walk aimlessly into traffic as you send a text on your phone. Similarly, never assume that a vehicle will stop for you, even at a stop sign or crosswalk. When leaving a parking area, never pull forward into another parking space, as another car may be pulling in. Additionally, always back out very slowly, looking behind you at all times. Never assume that just because it’s clear the first time you look that it will remain clear.
The information in this article was obtained from various sources. This content is offered for educational purposes only and does not represent contractual agreements, nor is it intended to replace manuals or instructions provided by the manufacturer or the advice of a qualified professional. The definitions, terms and coverage in a given policy may be different than those suggested here and such policy will be governed by the language contained therein. No warranty or appropriateness for a specific purpose is expressed or implied.