While people might not think of it, parking lots are very dangerous places.
For one, in a parking lot, there is a lot of motor vehicle traffic. There is also plenty of foot or even bicycle traffic, meaning cars and pedestrians are in close quarters and can be involved in accidents.
This is especially true in the large parking lots of big box stores, indoor and outdoor shopping centers and event centers, airports, public buildings, and other large facilities.
Unfortunately, not every driver operates a vehicle safely or slowly in a parking lot. Even when they do, serious injuries can still happen.
There are other hazards in parking lots besides motor vehicles
Aside from motor vehicles, customers and other Charlotte area residents who park in lots face other hazards as well. For one, falls and other injuries are possible in parking lots. Sometimes, the surfaces outside a store can be slick.
Even in fair weather, potholes or broken or malformed surfaces can cause a fall. There are other physical hazards in parking lots as well.
Finally, especially at night or when the lot is empty and abandoned, criminal activity can present a hazard.
The law requires owners of parking lots to take reasonable precautions
In North Carolina, the owner of a parking lot is not expected to prevent all accidents, particularly where another person, a careless motorist for example, may also share some of the blame.
However, the owner must take reasonable steps to ensure that everyone who uses the parking lot is able to stay safe.
They must, for example, keep the lot well-maintained, use proper signs and street markings and be sure that the parking lot is well-lit and reasonably secure.
If they fail in this legal obligation, then victims of parking lot injuries may be able to hold them financially accountable.