Have you ever gone shopping, only to come out to see a brand new dent on your bumper from someone backing into you? Or have you ever seen someone open their door into another person’s car and leave without saying anything? Fender benders are extremely likely to happen in crowded parking lots, and even more so during the holidays. Christmas shoppers are more worried about getting to their next destination than double checking that a car isn’t coming. To combat this, here are some ways you can prevent automobile accidents within parking lots:
Don’t rely solely on your back up camera. Your camera is not all-seeing, so it won’t be able to tell you if there is someone further down the road or if a person is getting close to your car. A good practice is to always check each mirror -twice- and see your rear-view camera as an unreliable tool.
Back out very slowly. This will give drivers that are going down the lane the ability to see you are trying to back out of your spot, and will, ideally, stop. Thinking you can beat cars out by quickly reversing will only get you into an accident.
Be conscious of where you park. There is no rule that says you have to get the closest spot! Park farther away where there aren’t as many cars and you will have less of a chance of being hit, less chance of hitting someone while backing out, and less likely of getting “door dinged.”
Know what to do when you get into a parking lot accident:
- Make sure everyone involved has not been hurt. If someone has been hurt, immediately call 911.
- Contact the local police to file a report of the incident. While some people think this might not be necessary, it is better to be safe than sorry when dealing with insurance.
- Trade information with the people involved in the accident: You should receive their car’s make and model, their name, their insurance, their address, and their primary phone number (like we said, it’s better to go overboard than to not get all of the information).
- Take pictures of the accident for insurance purposes and talk to anyone that saw the accident happen.
- DO NOT start talking about who’s fault the accident was. Your insurance will figure this out, and by wrongly admitting it was your fault, it could create problems down the road.
- Make a claim with your insurance.
- If you think you were wrongly accused of being at fault for the accident or think you should have gotten more in money damages, contact Tad Morlan to fight for you.
The holidays create more opportunities for reckless driving, so it is important to know what to do in these situations. If your car has been damaged by a person that fled the scene, that person can be subjected to a hit-and-run charge (in this case, always alert the police of the incident). If you have hit someone’s car that is not currently present, NEVER leave the scene until you have written down your insurance and personal information on a piece of paper and left it on the car in a place the person would see. After a car accident (may it be your fault or someone else’s) and you feel that you have not received the correct outcome, call Tad Morlan, an experienced car accident attorney.