What to do if you are injured in a parking lot collision - Diamond and Diamond Lawyers
  • Tuesday, 07 August 2018

What to do if you are injured in a parking lot collision

#AskSandraZisckind

You might think the parking lot at the mall where you shop or at the office complex where you work is a relatively safe place. After all, parked cars and vehicles searching for a parking place are safer and pose less risk of a collision than vehicles traveling at high speeds on the roads and highways you take to get to your destination. The truth is that parking lot accidents occur with alarming frequency causing property damage and physical injuries. Here are some of the things you need to know about parking lot accidents and what to do if you become the victim of one of them.

Causes of parking lot accidents

If you associate parking lots and parking garages with stationary vehicles awaiting the return of their owners, you are sadly mistaken. There is constant movement as vehicles come and go from the lot while vehicles pull out of and into spaces. Add to this the movement of pedestrians walking in between parked vehicles and crossing the path of vehicles moving within the facility, and you have the perfect scenario for a collision.

Some of the common causes of parking lot and parking garage collisions include the following:

  • Vehicles backing out of a parking space into another vehicle.
  • Making quick turns into parking spaces without taking time to observe the movements of other vehicles.
  • Vehicles follow each other too closely while looking for a parking space resulting in rear-end collisions caused by a vehicle suddenly stopping to pull into a vacant space or to avoid a vehicle abruptly pulling out of a space.
  • Drivers refusing to yield the right of way.
  • Distracted driving caused by texting while driving and other behaviours that divert a driver’s attention.
  • Speeding or failing to obey stop signs within parking lots.
  • Opening car doors without taking notice of approaching vehicles.
  • Pedestrians distracted by trying to find their car and not taking notice of approaching vehicles or vehicles backing out of parking spaces.

If a parking lot collision is caused by the negligence of a driver, the injured party could be entitled to make a claim for compensation.

Ontario traffic laws and parking lots

Determining how the laws affect parking lot accidents can be a bit of a challenge, so someone injured in a collision in a parking facility needs to get advice and guidance from an experienced and knowledgeable personal injury lawyer. The Ontario Highway Traffic Act governing how drivers operate their vehicles may not apply to parking lots. Some parking lots are private property where the Highway Traffic Act does not apply, but there are exceptions.

What to do following a parking lot collision

If you are injured in a parking lot collision, here are a few steps you should take to protect your right to file a claim for damages:

  • Call 911 to report the accident.
  • Seek medical treatment as soon as possible.
  • Do not make statements to the other driver or to anyone at the scene of the accident about your physical condition. Some injuries might not be apparent for hours or even days after an accident, so telling someone that you feel okay could jeopardize your claim.
  • Take photographs of the scene, including the position of the vehicles involved in the accident.

Ontario personal injury lawyers can help

The personal injury lawyers at Diamond & Diamond have years of experience claims for compensation on behalf of victims of parking lot and parking garage collisions. Contact our 24/7 injury hotline at 1-800-567-HURT or visit our website to speak to someone now about your claim. Consultations are free, and we have offices located throughout Ontario.

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