The truth is most people do not know anything about the unexpected risks you take when you use a public parking lot. According to the IIHS, around 20% of all vehicle accidents happen in parking lots. A major source of damage is the action of backing out. While fortunately it is expected that this number will go down in the future, you still need to be careful and know exactly how to avoid parking lot accidents. Here’s exactly how you can do that.
Every year in the US, 267 individuals are killed by drivers backing into them. This usually happens in parking lots or driveways, with 15,000 extra injuries taking place. Back-up camera regulations will help but right now, it is important to be aware of this huge risk. Remember you have much more visibility when you pull forward out than when you reverse. Taking a few extra moments to back into the parking spot can help much more than expected.
Driving In Circles
So many drive around the parking lot as they look for a spot that is as close as possible to an entrance. The problem is that this is exactly where traffic is high in parking lots. Just look for spots where you can park without having to do too much work. Try to avoid driving in reverse and simply sacrifice a little bit of convenience with how much you walk to protect yourself.
Staying In The Right Lane
Usually, parking lots are private property. This means regular driving rules do not apply but this does not mean you should not respect them. There are so many drivers that will cut diagonally in parking lots to get to the place they want to reach. Avoid being among these people and you drastically reduce the possibility of being involved in an accident. Just keep riding as you were on the road.
Choose The Parking Neighbor
Whenever possible, try to park right next to four-door cars. Avoid the two door cars because they have much heavier, longer doors. With them, it is likelier to end up with a ding in your door if the owner is not attentive when opening the door.
Avoid Cart Stalls
These stalls have to be avoided because people are not really careful when they push carts towards them. If they end up hitting your car with the shopping cart, they will usually just walk away.
Take It Slow
Never assume that the other drivers in the parking lot will be as careful as you are and they will respect rules. You have to drive particularly slowly and defensively in parking lots. This helps you to be ready to quickly react if something happens.
When You Reverse Park
There is a specific way to safely back into the parking spot that most people know nothing about. Whenever in such a situation, simply follow these steps:
- Go past the spot you want to park in.
- When you reach halfway past it, start turning the wheel in the opposite direction.
- Drive forward and point the car’s back towards the space.
- Start backing up.
- Always watch the side mirrors to be 100% sure you are clear.
- After you mostly entered the spot, make sure to pull forward so you straighten the car out.