Peter Thompson & Associates: Maine’s Leading Parking Lot Accident Attorneys
Everyone knows that parking lots can be a stressful place. Nowadays, it isn’t uncommon to arrive at a parking lot to find no spots available, making you drive around and around until someone finally leaves. Other times, parking lots are full of people, which can cause even the most patient person to feel frustrated and trapped. While these scenarios are often what we consider when thinking about parking lots, many fail to realize that these areas can also be highly dangerous.
Undoubtedly, parking lots are replete with hazards to pedestrians and drivers alike, leading to thousands of serious accidents each year in the U.S. While many people may think that parking lots are safer since drivers tend to proceed more slowly than on roads and other areas, the statistics are alarming and, indicate just the opposite. Specifically, one out of every five motor vehicle accidents occur in parking lots, accounting for roughly 14% of all auto accident damage claims filed in the U.S. Moreover, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports that approximately 60,000 pedestrians (many of whom were children and the elderly) were injured in traffic accidents back in 2006, with a substantial portion of these individuals having been located in parking lots. In fact, roughly 22% of all children between the ages of 5 and 9 killed in fatal car accidents were pedestrians, many of whom were in a driveway or parking lot at the time the incident occurred.
If you or a loved one was injured in a parking lot as a result of another’s negligence, contact Peter Thompson & Associates now at 1 800.804.2004 to learn more about your legal options. Our team of qualified Maine personal injury attorneys will take the time you need to answer all of your questions, and help you make informed decisions in your case. Contact us today to schedule your completely confidential initial consultation.Common Causes of Parking Lot Accidents
There are many causes of parking lot accidents that can occur however, the most common in Maine are as follows:
- Backing out of a parking spot. Backing out of a parking spot leads to the highest percentage of all pedestrian accidents (approximately 25%). These types of accident typically occur as a result of blind spots that are created when a vehicle is parked between two cars, significantly obstructing a driver’s vision.
- Drivers pulling into a parking spot. Drivers entering a parking spot sometimes fail to watch for other drivers and pedestrians who are located in the vicinity. Whether due to driver or pedestrian inattention, these types of accident occur frequently in parking lots, leading to thousands of serious injuries.
- Drivers pulling into or out of parking lots.
- Inattentive and/or distracted drivers. Drivers who eat, fiddle with a radio, talk on the phone or text while driving in a parking lot are at risk for causing pedestrian accidents.
- Reckless and/or careless drivers. There typically aren’t speed limits or traffic laws that are enforced within parking lots, leading to thousands of serious accidents involving reckless and/or careless.
- High parking lot traffic. When parking lots become crowded, it often leads to frustration among drivers and pedestrians alike. As a result, serious accidents may occur due to the sheer numbers of those frequenting a lot at a given time.
While not all accidents in parking lots can be prevented, there are ways of maximizing your safety, regardless of whether you are a driver or pedestrian. The following are some safety tips you should consider the next time you are in a parking lot:
- Look both ways before crossing. Your mother has likely told you this a thousand times however, it is still useful and lifesaving advice. No matter what, always look where you are going when you are in your car or on foot in a parking lot. Since parking lots tend to be crowded with both pedestrians and cars, it is important to always look where you are going before proceeding. Also, be sure to instruct your children to always look where they are going and, hold their hand while in a parking lot to make sure they are out of harm’s way.
- Drive slowly. Speeding in parking lots is a primary way in which people become injured. Always watch your speed and pay attention to where you are going while driving.
- Make sure you are clear to either pull into a spot or back out of one. Drivers must take all reasonable steps to ensure that it is safe to pull into or back out of a parking spot This includes using your rear view and side mirrors, as well as getting out of your car, if necessary, to ensure that the “coast is clear” before proceeding.
- Realize it can wait. Despite whether you are a driver or pedestrian, do not let distractions compromise your safety. If you receive a phone call or text, realize that it can wait until you are in a safe place. Wait to pull out of a spot before eating, opening a purchase, or using your cell phone, as it could mean the difference between life and death.
If you have been injured in a parking lot-related car or pedestrian accident in the state of Maine, the experienced, knowledgeable, and highly qualified parking lot accident attorneys at Peter Thompson & Associates can help. We offer excellence of legal services to all parking lot accident victims, guiding you towards a full recovery. Call us today at 1 800.804.2004 to schedule an initial consultation at one of our offices in Falmouth, Bangor, and Portland, or at an office meeting location in your town. Home and hospital visits are also available.