Have you ever seen someone diagonally cutting across a parking lot at top speed? Or, maybe you’re the person that ignores the lanes and drives straight through that lot. Either way, parking lots have road rules too, though it may not seem that way. The truth of the matter is that a parking lot accident counts just as much as a road accident, and your insurance premiums will still go up if you get into an accident in a parking lot.
What are the parking lot rules? For some reason, most people aren’t aware of these rules, but becoming familiar with what is and isn’t right will help you drive more responsibly in a parking lot, and maybe even avoid an accident! Take a look at these lot rules, and remember to abide by them any time you are in a parking lot (empty or not).
-If you are leaving a parking space, you have to yield to oncoming traffic. It can be really frustrating to try and back out of a space only to note that nobody is letting you go, right? Unfortunately, there’s nothing that you can do about this. You do have to wait for someone to let you go before you can back out. If you back out (or go forwards) and run into someone, it’s your fault.
-Ever smash the door of another car when you step out? If you opened your door onto another car, you are at fault. So, look around before you open that door, and note whether or not anyone is in the car next to you. If you see someone in the car next to you, wait for that person to get out before you open your door.
-Parking lots have signs for a reason, and you have to follow them. If you go down the wrong side of the lot, don’t stop at a stop sign, or barrel into a lane of traffic without looking, you are at fault. You have to note the signs and follow them. If you see a police officer directing traffic and you ignore those directions, you are again at fault. You can get tickets for this kind of behavior, and if you wind up in an accident it will be your fault.
-If you are leaving a parking lot lane (like the lane between two rows of cars), and you enter a major lane (one that leads to an exit or to the road), and you hit someone, it’s your fault. You have to wait for the major lane of traffic before you can enter that lane.
In a Parking Lot Accident?
What do you do if you get into a parking lot accident? Most people never report these fender benders, but if it’s a more serious accident you have to call the police right away, and do not move your car from the spot where it is parked if someone has been hit or injured. If you can move, move your car away from major traffic and out of the way. See if the other person is okay, and then call the police (typically if the damage is more than $1,000).
Remember to gather as much information as you can from the other driver. As soon as you have all of these details, phone your insurance company to report the accident. Just remember that if you were at fault, your insurance will go up! So, it really pays to know the rules of the lot, and to abide by them. Even if you think that nobody will get hurt if you back up quickly or cut across lanes diagonally, it’s never worth the risk.
One way to avoid an unnecessary accident is to purchase the best backup camera for your vehicle from QuickVu. With a simple rear view camera installation, you will be able to see anything in back of you immediately when you back up. If someone isn’t paying attention and walks behind your car, you can see them with a backup camera – and you can save your own or someone else’s life. For more information about how to install a rear view camera, call us today for details. You can also visit us on our Facebook page.