Collisions in parking lots are the most common and least reported accident.
What can be done to improve driver and vehicle safety when operating in a parking lot and trying to squeeze into a spot?
The best way to avoid a parking lot crash is to backup as little as possible. Here are some safety tips and practices that drivers should keep in mind.
Setting a Safety GOAL
First, drivers should look for pull-through parking spaces. By parking in a pull-through space, drivers would decrease their chances of getting into an accident.
If the driver can’t pull-through a parking space, they need to back in.
And, drivers should also remember the vehicle’s pivot points. Not to forget, the front tires give the vehicle direction and the rear wheels help with pivoting.
Also, drivers should wait for the rear wheels to align with the center pillar and then make the turn. Otherwise, they will turn into the obstacle.
Next, drivers need to judge whether the vehicle is going to fit and keep a watchful eye on other vehicles to make sure they do the same.
Therefore, the best way to do this is to get close to the side they can see through the best.
The right front provides the best view as the driver moves the vehicle, and they can judge it the best. The rest of the car should follow through, don’t stare at the obstacle.
Finally, here’s a simple acronym to help drivers remember to be safe: GOAL, or “get out and look” at what surrounds the vehicle.
GOAL allows drivers to become aware of any obstacles that may be in their way as they pull out of the parking space.
Drivers should approach from the passenger’s side and do a walk around. There could be kids back there or a pole the driver forgot about.
Moreover, when drivers are backing out, they need to make sure backing lights activate, the vehicle is in reverse, and they should linger for a few seconds. Before reversing, drivers need to tap on the horn a couple of times. This will serve as a warning for pedestrians and those distracted by their smart phones to move away from the vehicle because it will be backing out shortly.
Integrating Safety Technology
Rear-view cameras and other safety technology are added benefits that supplement drivers’ safety techniques and practices.
It is terrific technology that allows drivers to see what is directly behind their vehicles, whether it is an obstacle or a child running up behind the car.
But, cameras and safety technology cannot give a complete view, and over-reliance on this technology will result in the development of bad habits.
Cameras and other safety technology work best when used in conjunction with safe driving techniques.
The addition of cameras and other technology to improve driver safety can serve as a secondary line of defense.
This technology will help drivers on how to maneuver.