How to avoid car park prangs

Car parks are designed to keep your vehicle safe.

However, that isn’t necessarily always the case, and sometimes, unfortunately, your car can be damaged.

While you can’t always avoid any unwanted scratches or bumps on your car, below, we've put together some simple parking tips to (hopefully) prevent them happening more often than not.

Check your mirrors

Of course, this shouldn’t just be for when you’re parking. Make sure to carry out a check of all your mirrors every time you get in your vehicle.

Even though, there will be speed limits in car parks, don’t take any chances, it’s important that you know your surroundings.

Know your car

Familiarise yourself with the length, height and width of your car.

Council car park spaces can legally be up to 8ft 10 in (270cm) wide, but most spaces these days are little wider than the minimum 7ft 6 (228.6cm) required. For example, that means a Vauxhall Astra measuring just under 6ft wide has only nine inches clearance on each side… not much of a margin for error!

Don’t rush

Plan your journey to allow time for parking, then make sure you choose somewhere suitable and safe. If you become stressed or anxious about finding a parking space, it could affect your driving skills.

When it comes to manoeuvring in, do everything slowly and carefully.

Use aids (if possible)

If you have parking aids, cameras and warning buzzers fitted, make sure you understand them and can make good use of them.

Plan your park

Unless there are signs specifically instructing how you should park, always aim to reverse into a space as it makes the start of your next journey much safer. However, this may not always be practical if you plan to fill the car boot with shopping bags.

Make a plan when you’re ready to drive away from the space. How close are you to other vehicles? Pillars? Bollards? Walls? Kerbs? How tight will your turn need to be?

Remain calm

If you sense someone else wants the same space, don't turn it into a race or a fight.

Always be careful

If you do need to reverse out of a space, be extra vigilant, and look very carefully for pedestrians and vehicles moving behind you.

Back to Latest News