According to the National Traffic Highway Safety Administration, an average of 91,000 people are injured or killed in nontraffic motor accidents each year. Nontraffic motor vehicle crashes occur off the public traffic way and include collisions in driveways, on private roads, and perhaps most commonly, in parking lots.
Parking lots are difficult to navigate in a vehicle as other drivers often disregard pavement markings and right-of-way; pedestrians also abound, exiting parked vehicles, cutting across lanes, and managing shopping carts or bags of groceries. With all these distractions, it’s no surprise that parking lots are often the scene of a vehicle accident.
If you are involved in a parking lot accident, here’s what you need to do:
With an accident, the first priority is to make sure you and any other individuals involved are safe. If possible, exit the vehicles and move to a curb, sidewalk, or grassy area. If someone is seriously injured or is unable to walk on their own, do not move him. Call 911 to report the accident as well as to request medical attention, if necessary.
While waiting for police to arrive, gather as much information as possible. Exchange name, insurance information, and phone number with the other driver. Do the same with witnesses, if any. If the other person is uncooperative, do not become confrontational or aggressive. Just do your best to take down as much information as you can.
When the police arrive, they will speak with everyone involved and create a report detailing the accident. This will be an important document during litigation. Without a police report, any statements become one driver’s word against the other.
Even the safest of drivers can become involved in a vehicle accident. If you were one of those 91,000 individuals involved in a parking lot accident, we can help. Contact us to schedule a free consultation and learn more about how we can help you resolve your legal concern.