North Carolina premises liability accidents a shopping hazard

As our Raleigh car accident attorneys noted in an earlier posting to our North Carolina Car Accident Lawyers blog, shopping mall parking lots are a common location for a motor vehicle accident involving a pedestrian.

According to the North Carolina Department of Transportation, one out of every 10 pedestrians involved in a North Carolina car accident is killed. In 2008, 169 pedestrians were killed in motor vehicle accidents statewide.
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Few times of the year are more dangerous for pedestrians than the holiday season when drivers and shoppers are often more focused on hot-ticket sales, party planning or their houseful of visitors than the road. Of course, the time change that comes with Daylight Savings plays some role in wintertime pedestrian-involved accidents, but nearly 15 percent of pedestrian fatalities occur when the victim steps from behind a parked car and another 28.4 percent of deaths happen in pedestrian crosswalks.

Regardless of the holi-daze of fellow drivers and shoppers, business and shop owners and mall management each have an obligation to maintain a safe environment that extends beyond store walls. This includes parking lot security and road maintenance.

The National Retail Foundation reminds everyone a good plan will do much to make holiday shopping more a pleasure than a pain. Some simple tips they suggest include:

~ Just like Santa – make a list! Before you hit the stores, know who you are buying gifts for and how much you’ve budgeted to spend on each person. Stay with the list!

~ Do your homework. Before shopping, go online and compare prices and read up on consumer reviews. Know each store’s return/exchange policy. Keep all your receipts in one place.

~ If you are sending gifts in the mail and want them to arrive before the holiday is over, head to the post office now.

~ Shop safely. If you’re going shopping at night, bring a buddy. Try to park in a well-lit area that is well populated. Remember where you park! If you are concerned with getting to your car after dark, ask a security officer to escort you to your vehicle.

~ Wear comfortable shoes, preferably with skid-resistant soles. Watch where you put your wallet and how you carry your purse. Stash credit cards, debit cards, ID and cash in a secure place. If you must leave packages or valuables in your car, put them in the trunk or other out-of-sight spot to help dissuade thieves.

Winston-Salem car accident lawyers with Lee & Smith know that being involved in a serious or fatal car accident, or losing a loved one to a fatal car crash, can be among the most trying times in your life. We hope that if you are involved in a serious car accident you will call us at 1-800-887-1965 or email our law offices to schedule a free consultation to discuss your rights.

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