New survey revealed which objects motorists most frequently struck while parking in last year, plus common excuses.
Drivers hit mirrors, bollards and garage doors
A UK survey showed that 29% of motorists had a minor collision while parking in the last year - and 12% left without leaving a note. This research - that came via vehicle lease/sales company OSV – also showed that the most common error was clipping a door mirror. 33% of drivers that fell foul had an impact of this nature.
But it was not just cars that suffered. 27% of accident prone drivers hit bollards such as those that mark parking bays. Others struck: garages (15%), gates (12%), walls (10%) and lampposts (5%).
Reasons motorists crashed while parking
Passenger distraction caused 20% of the parking collisions, the survey showed. Other factors included: pedestrians blocking the view or causing changes of direction (17%), pressure from other motorists (11%), being distracted by a mobile phone (7%), and a loud noise making drivers “jump” then misjudge the manoeuvre (3%).
But it was leaving without writing a note that earned disapproval from OSV Co-Director, Debbie Kirkley. She said: “It’s disappointing to see that so many motorists are prepared to leave the scene of an accident without taking responsibility or leaving contact details”.
She continued: “Admittedly, this research is based upon minor bumps and scratches, so it’s feasible to think that it’s not worth the effort when many of us have had to cover the costs of damage inflicted on our own cars by other people. However, common courtesy and simply saying sorry can go a very long way”, Ms Kirkley argued.
She theorised: “I think the main issue is that people often feel embarrassed when they’ve been responsible for a minor accident - and we all have the inbuilt flight mechanism. Who wants to live with a guilty conscience, though?” The OSV Co-Director concluded: “I’d much rather swallow my pride and face the embarrassment.”
Drivers try to avoid parallel parking
It seems motorists have an uneasy relationship with parking; particularly parallel. An OSV focus group said 15% of members try to avoid it entirely and 47% park further from a destination than necessary if there is an easier space. Furthermore, the average driver “often” needs up to 5 attempts to complete such a manoeuvre.
Focus group members added that 75% feel “put off” when parallel parking if there is perceived pressure from other, waiting, motorists. OSV Co-Director, Andrew Kirkley, said: “I think that everyone has experienced the panic of parking poorly in front of an audience, so it’s a shame we’re not all a little more sympathetic.”