The holiday shopping season can be a joyful, but hectic, time for millions of Americans as they hurry to their local mall or downtown area to buy the perfect gift for beloved family members and friends.

However, parking garages and lots are risky places to be this time of year as hundreds die, and thousands are injured in parking areas. Insurance companies say injuries rise sharply starting on Black Friday and remain high throughout the holiday season.

‘Tis the season for distractions

The National Safety Council (NSC) surveyed drivers from across the country, asking them about their behavior while driving through parking lots. Of those who responded:

  • 63% adjusted the radio, climate control and GPS systems
  • 56% were on a cellphone sending or reading texts
  • 52% caught up with their friends through social media
  • 50% typed, sent and read emails
  • 49% watched videos on their in-vehicle entertainment systems or phones or took pictures

Pedestrians pay a heavy price in parking lot crashes

Federal data shows 9% of all pedestrian deaths in parking lots result from vehicles backing up, despite new technology designed to aid drivers. The NSC offers these safety tips:

  • Conduct a complete walk around your vehicle and look for low-lying objects
  • Use your mirrors and look over your shoulder instead of relying solely on cameras and sensors
  • When you can, pull forward in a parking spot, so you are heading out into the traffic flow

Protect your future following an injury accident

Injuries caused by someone else’s negligence can create long-lasting or sometimes permanent physical and financial consequences. Victims suffer extreme medical debt, lost wages and other related damages. An experienced personal injury attorney here in Indiana will protect your rights and work to get you the compensation you deserve.