If you survived the perils of Black Friday shopping, congratulations to you. Chances are that you made out well and will not have to brave the crowds and mall traffic until after Christmas. However, if your shopping is not complete, you should take heed when you go through parking lots.

According to a recent MarketWatch.com report, more than one in five car crashes occurs in a parking lot or garage. Even more ominous, a data from Nationwide Insurance indicates that car accidents in parking lots increase during the holiday season. 

There are some obvious reasons. Despite the festive nature of the holiday season, tensions tend to run higher in shopping center parking lots as drivers fight to get prime parking spots. Also, with the proliferation of smartphones and coupon apps that alert customers about deals as they approach a mall, chances are that drivers are distracted as well.

Because of the emotionally charged nature of the holiday season, drivers must be especially diligent while driving in mall parking lots. The same duty of reasonable care that applies on the street applies in the lot. Similarly, if a driver fails to use reasonable care and causes an accident, he or she can be held liable. This means that a person injured in a crash (or whose car sustained damage) can seek monetary compensation for their losses.

In the meantime, drivers are cautioned to pay attention, use turn signals and keep their cool.

The preceding is not legal advice. For questions about your rights and options, contact an experienced personal injury attorney.