It’s well known that I won’t drive on freeways, but I do have to drive in parking lots. There are times when I wish I could avoid them as easily as a freeway, but if we want to eat, I’ve got to go to the market. Here are some pointers that may help you avoid getting into an accident.
Stop Signs: These signs mean the same thing in a parking lot that they do on the road. It’s not a suggestion, it’s the law. Stop. Please. I once counted the number of cars that blew off a sign in the parking lot I frequented the most. At least a quarter of the people went right through it.
Lack of a Stop Sign: There are conditions in a parking lot that has traffic in two directions stop with a third with no such sign. If you don’t have a stop sign, you are impeding the flow of traffic by stopping. However, it is a good idea to slow down and look, as people do drive through the signs.
Look Both Ways: I got into an accident because someone wasn’t. He was staring to the left. I started through the intersection and got halfway through it before he center punched me — still looking the other way.
Speed: A parking lot is not on the NASCAR circuit, nor is it the Indianapolis speedway. You cannot do 45 in the lot. You should keep it under twenty, and some lots have a five mile an hour speed limit. If you think about it a bit, that’s logical.
Pedestrians: These are not targets to be aimed for, nor are they in your way simply to annoy you. Keep in mind that you will shortly be getting out of your car and you will be a pedestrian. In this, the Golden Rule applies very well. Do unto others as you would have them do unto you — do you want to be a target?
Speed Bumps: The first word is the key. These are put in the lot to slow people down — not as launch facilities for your vehicle. Gassing it in order to go airborne is not the intention.
On Parking: Just because you have an expensive car doesn’t mean you can take up two spots in a busy lot. If you’re really worried about the “door ding faerie” park further away. You may also miss the “sticky handed kid” and the “let the cart roll whither it will go” faeries.
Handicapped Spots: These are not nice places for a prolonged conversation. They are for those of us who have movement challenges. Don’t put your cart in the middle of it and don’t park there “just for a minute.” The latter can get you a very expensive ticket. Those who need the spots need them for very real reasons.
In short, you should operate your vehicle in a parking lot the same way you would on the road. Obey the speed limits, follow the directions of the signs and otherwise act with some common sense.