Nightmare car parking

As Christmas shopping trips crank up, so too do reports of car parking confrontations, dented Christmas pride and crunched panels.

According to the AA, car parking leads to more claims than any other single source as woeful stories of parking scraps and scrapes are relayed to claims staff. A new AA-Populus study shows that over the past year, almost half (47%) of nearly 30,000 motorists who responded, have seen damage inflicted on their parked cars over the past 12 months.

Most (42%) said that their car had suffered a dent or scratch caused by someone or something else and judging from insurance claims they include careless parking, exuberant opening of doors, parking spaces that are ‘too small’ or shopping trolleys let loose in wind or on sloping surfaces.

AA car parking tales

A few examples of comments from AA customers calling to make a claim

“Full trolley came tearing down the slope, hit my car and overturned, delivering some of its contents into my open tailgate!”

“We collided when trying to get into the same parking space”

“He kicked my door in because I got to the space first.”

“A big 4×4 truck was in the next space when I parked.  When I got back it had gone but there was a long gouge down the doors.”

“The police car swung into the car park and as the officer turned his car round he reversed into mine, denting the wing.”

“Accidentally put the car into reverse and smashed the glass trolley shelter.”

“The driver parked so close to the car on the left she dented the bumper.  She tried again and hit my car – the space was too small anyway.”

“Misjudged turn and wedged my Jaguar on top the low car park wall.”


This comes at a time when Milton Keynes Council announced that it is going to increase its number of car parking spaces – by making them smaller!

Yet only one in 20 (5%) admit that they have suffered damage that they caused themselves. Just 3% say that their car was deliberately vandalised while it was parked.

And, while the numbers are small (less than 1% of the total), of those reporting that their car had been broken in to and items stolen while parked, this was more likely to have happened around Christmas time.