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Why do pedestrian accidents happen so often in parking lots?

Multiple Cars in a Packed Parking LotWhen you go to the mall, a big box store, or your local grocery store, you probably do not think you are in danger. Yet, as soon as you get out of your vehicle, you are. Dangerous pedestrian accidents are all too common in parking lots.

According to an AAA Mid-Atlantic study in 2013, 30 percent of pedestrian accidents occurred in parking lots in Montgomery County, which is one of the only places in the country studying this issue. Seniors are at high risk of causing these accidents. A study by Texas A&M’s University Center for Mobility found that seniors had a much higher risk of causing an accident—including ones involving pedestrians—in a big box store parking lot. Elderly drivers were 17 times more likely to cause a crash in these parking lots than when they drove on roadways.

What Are the Causes of Pedestrian Parking Lot Accidents?

Vehicles pose a danger for unsuspecting pedestrians walking back to their own cars or into the mall or store. The majority of the time, the driver is found to be at fault in causing these accidents. Common reasons parking lot pedestrian accidents happen include:

  • Engaging in distracted driving. It is always dangerous for motorists to be distracted by talking on their cell phones, texting, or adjusting instrument controls while driving. This can pose an even bigger danger when drivers are surrounded by pedestrians in busy parking lots.
  • Accidentally pushing the wrong pedal. Some pedestrian accidents occur when a driver pushes down the accelerator instead of the brake. In fact, this is one of the reasons how seniors cause parking lot crashes.
  • Searching for a parking space. If drivers are looking for a parking space and not paying attention to their surroundings, they are likely to hit a pedestrian who is less visible than a vehicle.
  • Not looking before backing up. Some drivers do not use proper care in looking for pedestrians before backing out of a parking space. Small children are often the victims of these tragic accidents because of their small size that make them hard for even careful drivers to see.

Although much rarer, pedestrians can also cause or contribute to these accidents. Some ways they could be at fault include:

  • Failing to walk within crosswalks—especially dangerous in busy parts of the parking lot
  • Assuming instead of verifying by eye contact that a nearby driver sees them
  • Engaging in distracted walking by talking on a cell phone, texting, or talking to the person they are with

Injuries People Suffer in Pedestrian Parking Lot Accidents

Even though the vehicles are going at a slower speed in a parking lot, pedestrians can suffer serious injuries. This is due to their smaller size and the fact that they have no protection from the vehicle hitting them. Pedestrians can suffer these types of injuries in these accidents:

  • Traumatic brain injuries
  • Spinal cord injuries
  • Broken, fractured, or crushed bones
  • Nerve damage
  • Burns
  • Internal organ damage
  • Neck and back injuries
  • Soft tissue injuries
  • Death

Let Brauns Law, PC Help You Obtain the Compensation You Deserve

If you or a family member was the victim of a pedestrian accident, you could have suffered long-term injuries that could significantly impact your day-to-day life. You could be off work for months or longer—if you can return at all. David Brauns understands the financial and emotional toll this can take on you and is here to help you obtain the compensation you may be entitled to for your lost wages, medical expenses, and pain and suffering. Start an online chat or call us toll free at 877-401-6689 to schedule a free consultation with David.

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