Thanks to its incredibly rapid growth, Calgary is something of a “car city”, and you simply can’t avoid the occasional parkade…especially when downtown.
When it comes to navigating parkades, you need to exercise extra caution when you’re behind the wheel. There are some special safety tips you should also keep in mind. Remember, the best way to enjoy low rates on auto insurance in Calgary is to go claims-free.
Auto Insurance Calgary: Driving in a Parkade
Accidents are a very real risk when you’re driving in a parkade, thanks to the close quarters and a high concentration of vehicles. While most parkade accidents are fender-benders, they can still cause significant damage to your vehicle, which in turn could send your auto insurance rates skyward.
Keep these common-sense parkade driving tips in mind at all times:
- Reduce your speed. It is recommended that you drive no faster than 10 km/h when you’re in a parkade.
- Watch for, understand, and obey all signs. It is not uncommon for driving routes in parkades to deviate from what you’d expect to see on a regular road. For example, incoming traffic may be routed to the left of an island instead of to the right. Look for signage, and don’t make assumptions.
- Activate your headlights when you enter the parkade.
- Toot your horn if you encounter a sharp, blind corner to warn any drivers who may be approaching of your presence.
- Always be alert for vehicles backing out of parking spots. Their drivers may have an obstructed view of traffic, especially if they are surrounded by other parked cars.
- Yield right of way to drivers backing out of spaces. This is considered good etiquette, and there’s an added bonus: you’ll be first in line to snag their parking spot.
- Take the first available spot if the parkade is busy. This will reduce traffic congestion and vehicle exhaust.
Auto Insurance Calgary: Parkade Crime Prevention Tips
Because parkades are often relatively dim with little pedestrian traffic, they can give opportunistic criminals a lot to work with. Reduce your chances of becoming a crime victim by observing the following safety principles:
- Always make certain that you lock your vehicle before you leave the parkade.
- Avoid leaving valuables in your car if at all possible. If you must temporarily store valuable items inside your vehicle, make sure they are out of sight. It’s generally a good idea not to leave anything in view at all, but failing that, it’s best to lock important items in your trunk.
- Secure your license plates with anti-theft deadbolts.
- Secure your steering wheel with an anti-theft device if your car doesn’t have an effective built-in alarm system.
- Keep your vehicle registration and proof of auto insurance in Calgary with you when you leave. In this day and age, identity theft is a major problem. These documents contain highly sensitive information, which an unscrupulous criminal could use to open false accounts in your name.
- Never leave an automatic garage door opener to your home in a parked car. If a criminal steals this and manages to figure out where you live, your home could become their next theft target.
This tip is less about auto insurance in Calgary and more about your overall well-being: when leaving or returning to your vehicle, be vigilant about your surroundings. Have an actionable plan in place in the event that someone approaches you with malintent. Parkades offer lots of hiding places for violent criminals.
Use these personal safety tips:
- Maintain 360-degree awareness of your surroundings.
- Do not wear earbuds or engage in any other electronic distractions until you reach street level.
- Consider carrying a personal alarm system, or be prepared to remotely activate your car’s alarm if someone attacks you.
Finally, if you see someone sneaking into or out of the parkage as its automatic door opens or closes, make a mental note of their visual description and report them to building security.
If you have any questions about auto insurance in Calgary, trust the professionals at Lane’s Insurance to answer. Inquire about bundling your insurance services to save. Visit us online to get a fast, free quote, or contact a Lane’s Insurance customer service representative.