Parking lots can be hard to navigate, especially during the holiday season. Not only are they packed with cars, but there’s also people walking with children and carts, and they’re probably not paying attention to cars because they have other things on their minds, like their shopping lists.
Whether you’re trying to get into or leave a spot, things can get serious very quickly when an accident occurs. Low speed accidents can be dangerous and cause serious injuries, especially when a pedestrian is involved. Thankfully, most parking lot accidents are not serious and go unreported, but they still happen.
A fact sheet from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports that an average of 1,621 people are killed each year in nontraffic crashes, which is predominantly parking lot accidents. Compared to the approximately 37,000 people killed each year in traffic accidents, the number of nontraffic accidents seems small, but that’s still over 4 fatalities a day.
What to Expect After A Parking Lot Accident
Most car crashes that happen in parking lots are just fender benders because people stop in time. But sometimes, the accidents can get more serious and do more damage than just a little dent. Here’s what to do immediately following a car crash in a parking lot:
- Take photos of the entire scene.
- Report the accident to the police if there is enough damage. Kentucky law requires any accident with damage over $500 to be reported.
- Call your own insurance company to let them know what happened.
- Exchange contact information with the other drivers or anyone involved, including insurance information.
- Seek medical attention as soon as possible, even if you don’t think you’re injured. Your adrenaline could be pumping and covering up any pain you have, so it’s best to get checked out right away.
- Take your car to a mechanic to evaluate the damage and get it repaired as quickly as possible.
It’s important to never apologize for an accident at the scene. Even if the accident wasn’t your fault, you might have the urge to apologize to the other drivers or people involved. That can change your case because then you assume full liability just for apologizing.
Kentucky Car Insurance Laws
Kentucky is a choice no fault state in the event of a car accident. This means that it doesn’t matter who was at fault for the accident, you will definitely have coverage for medical bills, mechanic bills, lost wages, and other costs caused by the accident. But the coverage of the costs comes from your own insurance policy as long as you did not opt out of Personal Injury Protection (PIP) coverage in your policy.
The no-fault system means that you can’t sue the other driver unless they have caused over $1,000 in medical expenses for you. Otherwise, drivers can opt out of the no-fault system when purchasing car insurance in Kentucky, which allows the driver to go for a liability claim in the event of a collision with another vehicle. But deciding on that option also allows other drivers to file a claim against you after an accident, so choose carefully.
If you have decided to file a car accident claim, you’ll need expert legal guidance. The Law Office of Todd W. Burris can provide that for you by walking you through the entire process with ample support. We can answer any questions you have about our state’s no-fault system and take care of the legal side of things so you can worry about recovering. Contact us today so that we can discuss your case.