AeroWesty From United States of America, joined Oct 2004, 20822 posts, RR: 60 Posted (2 years 7 months 2 weeks 6 hours ago) and read 4559 times:
I've been noticing a trend of people backing into parking spaces lately. It's been catching my eye as I once had to take the fault for backing into a car in the lane in a parking lot, when the lane had been clear when I began backing up.
The other day I went to pick up a colleague at his hotel, and noticed that almost half of the cars were parked backwards in the spaces that were at 90° angles to the driving lane. So I've been giving it a try, and I actually like it. It's taking some getting used to—I've set up the controls for Driver #2 on the car for side mirrors down so I can see the lane markers at the touch of a button—but it's not that difficult.
There seems to be a reason for it, it cuts down on parking lot accidents (good for me!), and is safer in terms of being able to see people, especially children who might be in your path.
Quote: "When backing in, I have to drive past the slot, then back in. On my way past it, I can look in the slot to ensure it is clear. I have situational awareness, so it is pretty safe to back in. When I leave, I just have to drive out and that is safer than backing out. If I don't back in, when I leave I have to back out into what is basically unknown traffic."
Backing into traffic in parking lots is more hazardous than you might think. Parking lot crash statistics are a bit hazy, particularly for crashes involving only property damage, but a study by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety in 2001 and 2002 found that 14 percent of all damage claims involved crashes in parking lots (some number of which must have involved vehicles moving in and out of spaces).
As the article from slate.com asks, if the logic of back-in parking is so clear, why doesn't everyone do it?
DarkSnowyNight From United States of America, joined Jan 2012, 1702 posts, RR: 3
Reply 1, posted (2 years 7 months 2 weeks 6 hours ago) and read 4545 times:
I generally back in, for the reasons mentioned, and also that I like it more that way.
As well, where I live, there is a slight incline out front, so it's just as easy to roll by it in N, let the hill take my momentum, and slide back into my spot(s). I also drive a standard, so this (backing in in general) makes it easier to remember to leave my car in R after I've set the brake.
Generally no, but I will often pull through a vacant adjacent spot. The only exception is when there is a big event where people will be leaving at once, like a sporting event. In that case I figure it's worth the time and effort to not have to back out later.
Why do Aerospace Engineering students have to turn things in on time?
tugger From United States of America, joined Apr 2006, 6368 posts, RR: 10
Reply 9, posted (2 years 7 months 2 weeks 4 hours ago) and read 4415 times:
I often do back in and one of the primary reasons is to maximize the space for me to open my door get out. With the advent of narrower parking spaces and since most people still pull in nose first, I can make the passenger-side to passenger-side much tighter than usual giving enough space to open my door and get out.
Quoting photopilot (Reply 5): IMHO, if you can't back into a parking spot using just the mirrors,
While I use my mirrors to monitor my spacing I always begin with twisting and looking backwards outside to ensure things are OK. I have a back-up camera as well but would never just rely on it.
I don’t know that I am unafraid to be myself, but it is hard to be somebody else. -W. Shatner
Interesting. Somehow, having learned how to drive almost 40 years ago, this phenomena of parking backwards has completely passed me by. (Not that Driver's Ed at school nor my driving test back then was any great shakes.) We were only taught how to parallel park.
I've driven through a double-length space before, like mentioned above, but then pulling out into the lane front first has felt as unusual as sitting backwards in a plane during takeoff.
WESTERN737800 From United States of America, joined Feb 2008, 695 posts, RR: 2
Reply 12, posted (2 years 7 months 2 weeks 2 hours ago) and read 4365 times:
I never backed in much til I started hanging out with a couple friends who do it all the time. I like it, my parking spot at home has a slight uphill incline so I back up to the concrete stop then go forward about a foot that way when it snows I can back up and get a run at it if I need to. I really like if If I ever have a dead battery and need a boost.
StuckInCA From United States of America, joined Oct 2005, 2023 posts, RR: 0
Reply 15, posted (2 years 7 months 2 weeks ago) and read 4285 times:
I figured this had more to do with rear wheel drives in snowy/icy areas and old habits. Meaning that a rear wheel drive that's been snowed/iced in takes work to drive out but not if you're going forward.
Not too many on the west coast part back in. A large percentage in the midwest do.
cptkrell From United States of America, joined Sep 2001, 3220 posts, RR: 12
Reply 16, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 6 days 23 hours ago) and read 4242 times:
Well, down here in the sticks, a lot of goobers back in to the saloon parking lots because they don't want their plates to be "read", but more oftenly it's because they don't want a jealous girfriend to I.D. the vehicle (remember, about 75% of the pickemup trucks around here are white, and chicks can't tell a GM from a Ford from a Dodge, but they CAN remember the ""XXX" on the plate!).
Seriously (actually, the above IS serious) when I'm at a Home Depot or such knowing I'm going to buy something six or eight foot long, I'll pull ahead into a parking space so as not to worry about backing into a traffic "hunter" lane. Otherwise, I'll usually back in. Ahh...visibility.
BTW, I notice a lot of people backing in whilst turning around to "see" throught the backlight and not look through the side RV mirrors to guage their progress. Incompetency. And kinda stupid. Just like turning your steering wheel when the vehicle is not even in a slight bit of forward or rearward motion. Great for front tire scrub, eh?
Anyway, I like backing in...you never know when you need a "quick gettaway". best regards...jack
PITingres From United States of America, joined Dec 2007, 1275 posts, RR: 13
Reply 17, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 6 days 20 hours ago) and read 4204 times:
I used to back in regularly. I don't much any more, mostly because nobody else around here seems to do it and you end up in a pissing and horn honking contest with someone who is right up your muffler and doesn't want to give you room to reverse. I do always however back into the driveway. It was mandatory to back into the garage in the house I lived in when I learned to drive.
okie From United States of America, joined Jul 2003, 3662 posts, RR: 3
Reply 19, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 6 days 19 hours ago) and read 4179 times:
Quoting WildcatYXU (Reply 18): That's interesting. In former Czechoslovakia was expressly forbidden to back into 90° parking spots due to the exhaust gases being emitted directly to the people on the sidewalks.
Did people leave their engines running for extended periods of time?
Quoting cptkrell (Reply 16): Well, down here in the sticks, a lot of goobers back in to the saloon parking lots because they don't want their plates to be "read", but more oftenly it's because they don't want a jealous girfriend to I.D. the vehicle (remember, about 75% of the pickemup trucks around here are white, and chicks can't tell a GM from a Ford from a Dodge, but they CAN remember the ""XXX" on the plate!).
I was thinking it would be easier to hook up the jumper cables.
I never ran into the backing in to 90deg spots until about 15 years ago when the Oil and Gas Industry started requiring it for safety reasons. The idea is that you have passed and visually inspected the area in which you are going to back your vehicle into which is a stationary environment. When departing you are facing an unobstructed view of a non stationary environment.
I park both ways in the civilian environment depending on my perception of the least chance of an incident.
bristolflyer From United Kingdom, joined May 2004, 2326 posts, RR: 0
Reply 20, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 6 days 19 hours ago) and read 4166 times:
I find it easier to back in than to drive in forwards. Then you have the benefit of being able to see better when pilling out when you're leaving. As said before, if there's a double-length space then I'll usually take that. And I will always look for a spot away from other cars and walk a few extra feet.
L1011 From United States of America, joined May 1999, 1722 posts, RR: 8
Reply 21, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 6 days 18 hours ago) and read 4144 times:
I prefer to back in so I can get out easier, but sometimes when I am being tailgated in the parking lot, if I pull forward enough to back in, the person following pulls into that space. Either that or he continues to ride my bumper so I can't back in.
mham001 From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 4257 posts, RR: 3
Reply 24, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 5 days 21 hours ago) and read 4002 times:
Quoting WildcatYXU (Reply 18):
I only back into parking spaces in underground parking garages. For some reason it's easier for me to back into tight space than drive straight in.
That's what everybody has missed, besides the sight and snow advantage, you can better park in tighter spaces with the wheels in the rear steering while pivoting on the lead-in wheels. That is why forklifts steer with the rear.
: I always drive through a parking spot if I can. Even if it means taking a slightly longer walk to the store or wherever. Not that it really matters th
: Found out the hard way a local college close to home actually makes it illegal to back in. I can't even begin to understand why. If everyone did, I wo