Parking Lots can be Dangerous Places

Public parking lots can be dangerous places for drivers and pedestrians. An exciting day at the mall shopping for sales and bargains can quickly turn into a painful experience after an accident in the parking lot. According to the National Safety Council, more than 60,000 people are injured and more than 500 are killed in public parking lots and garages every year.

Traffic safety studies show that two-thirds of drivers in public parking structures admit to being distracted while driving through the lot. Holiday sales and special sale events during the year make drivers especially vulnerable to distractions. Many drivers admit to distracted behavior from talking or texting on their cell phones, looking for convenient parking places, keeping an eye on pedestrians, and looking at sale signs and mall decorations. Some drivers even use their car navigation and video chat systems, take photos, and send emails while driving in public parking lots. A fairfax reckless driving lawyer often sees serious accidents that result from distracted driving behaviors.

Large crowds of shoppers increase accident risks for drivers and pedestrians. People who are getting in and out of their cars, walking through parking lots and garages, looking for elevators and stairways, and talking or texting on their cell phones are often injured by drivers. Although drivers may be traveling at slower speeds in the parking lot, pedestrians can be seriously injured if struck by a moving vehicle. When shopping centers, malls, and public places are very busy, the chances of accidents and injuries rise by as much as 20 percent.

Traffic studies show that a high percentage of parking lot accidents and injuries are caused by distracted drivers who are not paying attention to their surroundings. To avoid accidents, drivers and pedestrians must be aware of their surroundings while in public parking structures. Drivers should slow down and watch for pedestrians in their path, especially when backing out of parking spaces. Pedestrians should watch for moving vehicles before they exit stores and cars or walk across the parking structure. Staying alert can prevent serious accidents and painful injuries.