Pedestrian collisions can occur anywhere that people cross paths with vehicles. Crosswalks, rural roads and major urban thoroughfares all experience occasional pedestrian crashes. However, there is another location where people may not realize their crash risk is higher than average.
Parking lots feature many vehicles coming and going and people walking from the store to their vehicles. Unfortunately, there are a few risk factors that have increased the risk for pedestrians in parking lots across the United States in recent years. What makes parking lots so dangerous for pedestrians?
Drivers use their phones in parking lots
Even though most people know how dangerous it is to pick up their phones while driving on the road, plenty of them feel as though it is not a safety concern to use their devices in parking lots. Roughly two-thirds of drivers admit to using mobile devices while actively driving in parking lots. Almost half of the people polled admitted to recording or watching videos sometimes while driving in parking lots. The decision to look at a phone to input an address into navigation or text a friend might mean that a driver fails to notice a pedestrian and knocks them down. Even low-speed collisions in parking lots can potentially cause brain injuries and broken bones for the pedestrians involved.
Bigger vehicles with visibility issues
In recent years, the trend for motor vehicles has been toward larger vehicles. Massive personal vehicles, like SUVs, hatchbacks and crossovers make people feel confident and safe on the road. They can easily do more damage just by being larger and heavier. Those bigger vehicles often also often have smaller individual glass pieces for safety’s sake. Smaller windshields and windows are less likely to catastrophically fail during the crash, but they also enlarge the blind spots around vehicles. Drivers may have a hard time spotting pedestrians, particularly short people, like children.
Pedestrians in parking lots need to be extra cautious and aware of their surroundings to minimize their risk of a crash. Filing an insurance claim or maybe a personal injury lawsuit could be a reasonable response to a pedestrian collision caused by a driver not paying attention in a parking lot.