Parking lots are not spaces where you immediately think of getting into a car accident, but the reality is that these accidents are more common than people realize. What are the parking lot accident laws in South Carolina?
At the Maguire Law Firm, our Myrtle Beach car accident attorneys are experienced in parking lot collisions with vehicles and pedestrians and can help you maintain your rights and get the compensation you deserve. Let us help determine who’s at fault for your parking lot accident.
Common Parking Lot Accidents
Parking lots can be chaotic places, with vulnerable pedestrians walking around, and vehicles coming and going. These locations can result in various accidents if someone isn’t paying attention or driving recklessly.
A common type of parking lot accident is rear-end accidents when a driver isn’t paying attention. These accidents can happen in parking lots if vehicles are lining up and one doesn’t stop in time.
A pedestrian can end up getting hit by a vehicle if the driver is going too fast or isn’t paying attention to what is in front of them.
Keep in mind that pedestrians usually have the right of way in parking lot crosswalks, so the driver will likely be at-fault.
Because parking lots can become quite crowded, sideswiping is a risk. This happens when one car strikes another on its side if it is driving by, pulling out, or pulling into a parking space. Sideswiping accidents are one of the more mild kinds of collisions since they usually only result in superficial damage.
If a driver is not paying attention in a parking lot, they could end up causing a head-on collision with another oncoming vehicle. An accident like this usually occurs when a vehicle is exiting the parking lot and doesn’t yield or pay attention to oncoming traffic. But it can also happen if the car is not staying in its correct lane and hits an oncoming vehicle in the parking lot.
South Carolina Parking Lot Laws
South Carolina has right-of-way procedures designed to keep people on the road safe and reduce the risk of accidents. Even with these laws, accidents still occur if drivers are not paying attention or driving recklessly.
All South Carolina residents should follow the right-of-way procedures, including watching and yielding to traffic and pedestrians when exiting the parking lot. You should also yield to vehicles in the access or feeder lanes since they will usually have the right of way. A general rule to follow is to always yield to pedestrians, especially if they are walking in pedestrian-designated areas.
To ensure you are following right-of-way laws, you should always pay attention to traffic arrows and signs that direct the flow of traffic. If you are ever unsure of who has the right of way, it is safest to yield to the other person.
Who is at Fault in a Parking Lot Accident?
Proving who is at-fault in a parking lot accident is difficult without a legal background. South Carolina parking lot accident laws depend on the situation since every accident is different. In most situations, fault will fall on the driver who acted negligently and broke right-of-way procedures.
For example, if you are pulling out of a parking space and another driver is distracted or speeding as they coast down a lane, and they hit your car, they would be at-fault. They would also be at-fault if they did not stick to their lane when driving in the parking lot or if they did not yield to pedestrians when the individuals on-foot had the right of way.
What to Do After a Parking Lot Accident
If you have gotten into a parking lot accident, you should follow many of the same steps as you would for any other auto accident. This includes making sure no one is injured and exchanging contact and insurance information with the other driver.
If possible, you should also take photos of the scene of the accident and the damage to your vehicle. If you notice streetlight cameras pointed in the area of the collision, make a note of this since it may have filmed what happened.
You should call the police to file a report, and immediately contact an experienced auto accident attorney as soon as possible. They can help you collect important evidence to prove that the other driver was at fault so you can potentially get compensation.
Hire a South Carolina Auto Accident Lawyer Today
When an accident happens in a parking lot, proving fault often comes down to deciding who had the right of way according to South Carolina law.
At the Maguire Law Firm, we can help you collect evidence to build your claim so that you have a better chance of proving who was at fault. Contact us today to schedule a free consultation online or call us directly at 843-894-3502.