By Madeline Klein on June 6, 2019.
Parking lots can be a dangerous place, for both cars and pedestrians alike. In fact, in a National Safety Council poll, 66% of drivers said they would make phone calls while driving through a parking lot.
So whether you’re zooming through the lot to make it to your destination on time or you’re strolling through it to take your time grocery shopping, make sure you’re being safe.
Pedestrian safety tips
DO keep your keys out. This will help you get in and out of your car quickly, but can also be used as a weapon if you’re feeling threatened while walking to your car.
DO look both ways before walking. We know, we know, you’ve probably been told that a million times by your mom. But she’s right, as always. Look both ways, maybe twice, before you cross. Some cars drive too fast in lots, and sometimes they have blind spots and won’t notice you. Better safe than sorry, right?
DO take the quickest route to your destination or the door of the building. The parking lot or a parking garage is no place to dilly-dally.
DON’T wear headphones or talk on the phone. Sure, you want to continue that conversation you were just having at lunch with your best friend, but the parking lot is not the place. Headphones and phone conversations can be distracting and will keep you from focusing on the other things happening in the parking lot. (PS: This one goes for drivers too!)
DON’T assume drivers can see you if you can see them. There’s a lot going on, and we all know cars can have different blind spots.
DON’T walk in between vehicles. Instead, walk down the aisles. Preferably with the cars angled toward you rather than away. That way you can see in between the cars, and since you’re facing the front of the cars, people can see you walking easier.
Driver safety tips
DO park near lights or in well-lit areas. This makes your car easier to find and is a deterrent for potential thieves. It can be especially important if you’re out of town like on vacation and don’t know the area.
DO be extra careful in parking garages. It is usually dark and hard to see pedestrians in these areas. A little extra caution never hurt anyone.
DO lock the doors as soon as you get into your vehicle and as soon as you exit the vehicle.
DON’T cut across a parking lot. Stay in the lanes, and make sure you’re going the right direction. Those arrows are there for a reason!
DON’T speed. This sounds like common sense, but it’s easy to go a little faster than you really should be in a parking lot. Take your time, and know that speeding in a parking lot won’t get you to your destination all that much faster. Plus, you can still get a ticket for speeding, even in a parking lot. And that type of thing can impact your insurance rate in the long run.
DON’T reverse out of a parking spot if you can avoid it. Your back window has more blind spots than your front, and it can be harder to see pedestrians when you reverse. If you can pull forward through a space to exit it, that is usually your best bet.
Pay close attention in parking lots
Parking lots are incredibly busy areas. Between cars and pedestrians, there’s a lot to pay attention to. But as long as you do just that and pay attention to your surroundings, you’ll be able to make it through one safe and sound.