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Washington Personal Injury Attorney Max Meyers Discusses What to Do After a Pedestrian Parking Lot Accident 

Many safety features are installed in and around public roads to keep pedestrians safe, including traffic lights, crosswalks, streetlights, and sidewalks. However, private entities often own parking lots and don’t necessarily have all those safety measures in place. Add dozens of cars navigating the area, with adults, kids, and shopping carts in the mix, and it’s no surprise that pedestrian parking lot accidents are common in Washington. 

If you or a loved one is involved in one of these incidents and unsure what to do, schedule a free, confidential consultation in person or over the phone so we can learn more about your individual case and determine how we can help. Pedestrians in a parking lot in Washington

How Parking Lot Pedestrian Accidents Happen 

No one ever intends to hit someone. Most motorists do their best to keep pedestrians safe. However, there’s often a lot going on in a parking lot that puts people on foot at risk. Here are some of the more common reasons for parking lot accidents. 

Distracted Driving 

Motorists are often more focused on finding a parking spot or checking their phones than on their surroundings. They might also be on headphones or preoccupied with errands, picking up other people, and checking off their to-do lists and don’t consider parking lots to be high-risk areas. 

Back-up Accidents 

Most of us have walked through a parking lot when suddenly, a parked car begins backing up in our direction. Sometimes the driver sees you and stops—other times, a collision occurs. While a motorist might claim a pedestrian was in their blind spot, it’s important to know whoever is behind the wheel is responsible for checking their mirrors and backup cameras, and doing a physical look behind time to make sure the way is clear. If they didn’t do these things, they’ll likely be found at fault for a back-over accident


Drivers should go less than 15 mph when in a parking lot. Greater speeds create dangerous conditions for both car accidents and pedestrian accidents. If a driver is acting recklessly, they may be responsible for the accident and its related damages. 

Wrong Pedal Accidents 

Pedestrian parking lot accidents often happen when a car is just starting to move out of its spot. Unfortunately, a distracted or unaware driver can sometimes tap the gas instead of the brake, or forget to put their car in reverse instead of drive. These two mistakes can be deadly for pedestrians. 

Who’s at Fault For Your Seattle Pedestrian Parking Lot Accident? 

It’s not uncommon for injured victims to blame themselves, especially in the moments after a collision. But sometimes it can be difficult to tell who’s liable and who deserves compensation. Pedestrian accident laws indicate that usually, there are three possible at-fault parties.


If the driver was reckless, distracted behind the wheel, under the influence, or careless, they could be at fault for the accident and any related injuries. This means they’re responsible for your medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other damages outlined in your claim. 

Parking Lot Owner

Most lots are privately owned by individuals or businesses, and they’re obligated to keep all areas reasonably safe for both people and vehicles. It’s possible that your pedestrian accident could have been prevented if the owner had properly maintained the area, responded to past complaints, or put reasonable safety measures in place. 


People can also be held liable for their injuries. For example, a distracted pedestrian on their phone could walk out in front of a car without warning. Or if someone is under the influence, they might fail to look before stepping off a sidewalk and into the lot. 

Additionally, other parties might be responsible for a pedestrian accident—or even multiple parties. When the Max Meyers Law legal team assesses the facts of your case, we’ll investigate all aspects of potential liability.

What to Do After a Washington Pedestrian Parking Lot Accident 

Even if you’re able to get up and brush yourself off, it’s imperative to treat the situation seriously. Injuries still happen when a vehicle makes contact with a person, even at very slow speeds. Here’s what to do in the minutes, hours, and days after your accident. 

Ensure Safety and Seek Medical Care

First, call 911 and if possible, move to a safe location away from traffic. Some injuries may not be immediately apparent, so arrange for a thorough medical exam.

Report the Accident 

Unlike traffic accidents on roads, law enforcement may not necessarily come to the scene of a parking lot collision and file an accident report. You may need to call them to report an injury and request an officer. Their report will also be essential evidence to support your case

Exchange Information

If you’re medically able, collect contact information from the involved parties, including names, phone numbers, addresses, and insurance information. If there are witnesses, try to obtain their contact information as well.

Document the Scene

Again, if you’re able, take pictures of the accident scene, including the vehicles involved, your injuries, and the surrounding area. Note the incident's time, date, and other relevant details.

Avoid Admitting Fault

Be cautious about admitting fault or making statements that could be perceived as an admission of guilt. Even saying “I’m sorry” to be polite might be misinterpreted. Be aware that there’s often more to these accidents than meets the eye—and you might not have all of the facts. 

Follow Medical Advice and Keep Records 

Keep track of all treatments, assistive devices, physical therapy, and other related expenses. Maintain a record of communication with insurance companies and other parties involved.

Get Legal Assistance

If there are claim disputes or concerns about liability, or if you want to make certain you’re making the right legal choices and getting the compensation you deserve, it's advisable to consult with a legal professional skilled in handling the complexities of Washington pedestrian accident cases. Our team is happy to consult with you and answer any questions you have—and if we can help you obtain a rightful settlement.

Max Meyers
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Max is a Kirkland personal injury attorney handling cases in Seattle, King County & surrounding in WA State.