Whether at the bus station, shopping mall, or airport, parking issues are usually an everyday occurrence. With cars backing out of parking spaces and others coming in, parking lots can get busy and confusing for many drivers. This makes parking lots high-risk locations for car accidents. While most parking lot accidents occur at low-speed and don’t cause severe injuries, some drivers ignore speed limits, leading to massive damage.
Fortunately, most parking lot accidents are caused by human error, which can be avoided. One of the best ways to avoid a parking lot accident is using a smart parking solution like WhereiPark to book a parking spot. This helps you avoid high-risk parking areas that are crammed and dimly lit and save you the hassle of driving around looking for a spot or getting stuck due to a lack of parking spaces. Besides that, you can save yourself the hassle and costly damages by learning how to prevent accidents in a parking lot. Here are a few tips to help you avoid parking lot accidents:
1. Drive Slowly
The first and most important tip for reducing your risk of a parking lot accident is to drive easily and slowly. Parking lots can sometimes get incredibly busy and packed with vehicles and foot traffic, making navigating challenging as you search for a spot. While some drivers may drive recklessly, you should try to navigate the area at safe speeds. At a low speed, you’ll have plenty of time to react to vehicles and pedestrians that get in your way. This will help you navigate safely, reducing the chance of getting into a parking lot accident and ensuring the safety of everyone around you.
2. Limit Distractions
Most parking lot accidents are caused by distracted drivers. That’s primarily because a lot goes on inside your car while driving, making it hard to pay attention to everything happening outside. While distracted driving is illegal and dangerous, most motorists still drive while doing other things, putting their lives and other people’s lives at risk.
Common distractions that usually lead to parking lot accidents include driving while drinking coffee, listening to music, checking on the kids, looking at the phone, and more. These activities can easily distract you from driving, making you more likely to hit another car or a pedestrian. To avoid accidents in parking lots, you should put your phone away while you’re behind the wheel and only enjoy your coffee or check your shopping list after parking. This will allow you to focus on parking safely and avoid getting into a crash.
3. Watch Out for Obstacles
Apart from limiting distractions, you should stay on the lookout for obstacles while parking your vehicle. You’re likely to encounter a lot of obstacles in a parking lot. This can include shopping carts pushed by strong winds, distracted motorists, and pedestrians not paying attention to their surroundings. Hitting a stray shopping cart can cause scratches and dents on your car, resulting in costly repairs. So, you should watch out for runaway carts left in the parking lot, distracted drivers backing out of parking spaces without checking, and even pedestrians walking around without looking.
4. Use Your Mirrors
Another great way to avoid a parking lot accident is by being aware of your blind spots when backing out of your parking spot. Typically, most drivers only look back quickly from one angle, continue backing out, and hit other vehicles or pedestrians. Backing into vehicles and pedestrians is usually one of the leading causes of parking lot crashes.
You can avoid that by adjusting your mirrors accordingly to ensure you can see all around you, including your blind spots. Once your mirrors are set, take the time to check and double-check your blind spots from all angles as you back out from a parking spot. You should also consider looking behind you and using your backup camera to ensure you have a clear view of your blind spots.
5. Embrace technology
Most car models nowadays come equipped with car parking technology that ensures safe and secure parking in a busy parking lot. This includes park distance control that uses ultrasound sensors to keep you from bumping into obstacles, a backup camera for safe reverse parking, parking assist systems, and cross-traffic alerts. These technologies make parking your vehicle hassle-free while helping you avoid parking lot accidents.
6. Avoid Parking in Congested areas
Parking in congested parking lot areas can increase your chances of getting into an accident. That’s because having more cars around you makes you more likely to ding them while backing out. The solution is to avoid parking in congested spots whenever you’re in a crowded parking lot. Instead, park at a distance or even on the outskirts. This will not only keep you from parking lot accidents but also allow you to exercise a bit as you walk to and from your destination.
7. Use Your Turn Signals
Just because you’re not on the highway doesn’t mean you should use your signals. Turn signals come in handy even when driving in a parking lot. Other motorists and pedestrians may not be able to tell when you want to turn into a parking space, which can result in an unnecessary accident if you don’t use your turn signals.
Ensure that you always use your turn signals when driving in a parking lot and you intend to turn. This can help notify other motorists you’re planning to turn into a new aisle or spot, pull out of a spot or aisle, and even turn off and on a thoroughfare. Notifying other motorists in the parking lot what you plan on doing can help keep you accident-free.
Following the above tips can help you to park your vehicle safely and avoid unnecessary parking lot accidents. Always drive slowly and stay alert to your surroundings so you can react instantly whenever you encounter obstacles. Keep a watchful eye on other motorists and pedestrians, and properly utilize your mirrors, camera, and sensors. This will help you park safely and ensure the safety of pedestrians and other motorists.