LAS VEGAS, Nevada. Pulling into a parking lot for many of us is a sign of arrival. Unfortunately, letting your guard down after you enter a parking lot can lead to car accidents and injuries. According to the National Safety Council, thousands of crashes occur in parking lots and garages. Parking lots can be especially dangerous because you have a situation where there are pedestrians and drivers occupying the same space at the same time and there may not always be set rules about who has the right of way and who should stop.
How can you prevent parking lot accidents, and what should you do if you are involved in a parking lot accident? Parking lot accidents are often caused by distracted driving. Pulling into a parking lot shouldn’t be the signal to call your friends and you shouldn’t wait until you pull out of a parking space to program your GPS. The same rules that hold for the road should hold for parking lots. This means you should put down your cell phone and focus on driving. Parking lots can be hazardous because drivers might be pulling out of spaces, pedestrians might be leaving their cars, and there may also be children running in the road.
According to Consumer Reports, cell phones can be just as distracting to pedestrians as they can be to drivers. When walking through parking lots, focus on your safety and watch for your children, and put the cell phone away.
In addition to avoiding distracted driving, you should also drive slowly and use directional signals when turning or parking. If there are signs in the parking lot, you should obey them. Remember that backing out of a parking space is the time when you are most at risk of hitting other drivers and pedestrians. Be particularly mindful that children will be harder to see than adults crossing behind your car. According to the NSC, 9% of parking lot deaths occur when a car is backing up. When backing up, if you are not sure you are safe, ask a friend or passenger to get out of the car and help, use your mirrors, and, when in doubt, exit your car and check that the coast is clear.
What should you do if you are in a parking lot crash or if you’ve been hurt in a parking lot? Make a police report. Under the law, you are required to report any accident in Nevada to the police if there has been an injury or death. But even if everyone seems fine at the scene, it may still be in your best interests to report the accident. Some injuries may not be immediately apparent after a crash. Traumatic brain injury, post-traumatic stress disorder, and certain types of back or neck injuries may not be immediately apparent after an accident. Sometimes the symptoms can take days to weeks to appear. To protect your rights, call the police at the scene of the crash and consider seeking medical attention if you believe you may have been hurt.
If you have been hurt in a parking lot accident, you may be entitled to seek damages for your medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering damages. Southwest Injury Law are personal injury lawyers in Las Vegas, Nevada who may be able to assist you with your claim. Our firm can review the circumstances of your accident, help you file a claim with insurance companies, and fight to help you get the settlement you may deserve from negligent parties. Visit us at https://www.southwestinjurylaw.com/ to learn more.

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