We tend to think that most car accidents occur on the streets or highways. However, a large percentage of car accidents in Louisiana take place in parking lots and garages. You are almost as high a risk of being injured in an accident driving through a parking lot as you are driving out on the highway.
According to the National Safety Council (NSC), thousands of car accidents occur in parking lots each year. These accidents result in thousands of injuries and hundreds of deaths. The leading cause for these accidents? Driver distraction and inattention.
Common Causes of Parking Lot Accidents in New Orleans
Like accidents out on the roads, car accidents in parking can occur for many different reasons, including:
Driver distraction. Motorists often drive through parking lots texting or talking on their phones, searching through their purchased items, dealing with children, etc. Driving distracted through a parking lot can be just as dangerous as distracted driving out on the roads.
Speeding. Driving through a parking lot at unsafe speeds makes it difficult to stop in time if a car pulls out of a parking spot or a pedestrian crosses the traffic lanes.
Not Paying Attention. Many parking lot accidents in New Orleans are caused by drivers who fail to check carefully when backing out of a parking space.
Aggressive driving. This can be a big problem, particularly around the holidays, when shoppers with limited time compete for parking spots in crowded lots.
Road conditions. Slick pavement in a parking lot can make it difficult to stop in time; torrential rain and dense fog could limit visibility.
Parking Lot Accident Injuries Can Be Serious
Parking lot accidents can result in injuries such as:
- Cuts, scrapes, and bruises
- Broken bones
- Soft tissue (muscles, ligaments, tendons) and organ damage
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Spinal cord injuries
- Head, neck, and back injuries
Always seek medical attention after parking lot accidents in New Orleans, even if you don’t think you’ve been injured.
What to Do After a Parking Lot Accident in New Orleans
Determining who is at fault in a parking lot accident can be a challenge. In some instances, the police won’t respond to an accident call that doesn’t involve a serious injury or death because it took place on private property.
After the accident, you should act in the same way as you would an accident out on the street:
- Check to make sure everyone’s okay
- Call 911 if needed
- Contact the police
- Exchange contact and insurance information with the other driver
- Collect as much accident evidence (pictures, witness information) as possible
- Don’t speculate about your physical condition (for instance, don’t say “I’m okay” after an accident)
- Don’t accept responsibility for the accident
To fully protect your rights, speak to a New Orleans car accident attorney as soon as possible after your New Orleans parking lot accident.
Getting the Compensation You Deserve for Your Injuries
If you’ve been injured in a parking lot car accident in New Orleans that was caused by the negligence of another driver, Louisiana state law gives you the right to seek compensation for the damages caused by these injuries. These include losses such as current and ongoing medical expenses, lost wages or loss of employment, as well as pain, suffering, and mental anguish.
However, in order to get the total compensation you are due for your accident-related injuries you have to take immediate steps to protect your rights. Louisiana’s statute of limitations laws only gives you one year from the time of your parking lot accident in which to file a personal injury claim. The sooner you hire a New Orleans personal injury attorney to represent you, the better your chances of getting the full compensation for your injuries.
A personal injury attorney can assist you in many ways after an accident. They can:
- Investigate your claim
- Gather evidence to establish your claim
- Handle all the paperwork and administrative work
- Help you avoid mistakes that could reduce the amount of compensation you can recover
- Help you assign an accurate dollar amount for your damages
- Negotiate on your behalf with the liable party’s insurance company
- Represent you in court
Get Help from the New Orleans Car Accident Attorneys at JJC Law
JJC Law is here to protect your rights after any type of car accident in New Orleans. We’ve helped clients all over the state of Louisiana obtain the compensation they deserve for the careless behavior of another. Contact us through our website, or call us at (504) 513-8820 to schedule a free initial consultation to discuss your case.