Image via KOMONews.com
On Wednesday afternoon, Seattle police say a white car backed into an Albert Lee Appliance Store in Fremont, sending one individual to the hospital with serious injuries.
According to academics who conducted a large-scale analysis of media reports about this subtype of car accidents, cars crash into buildings roughly 20 times a day in the U.S. It seems hard to believe, but you will always find these stories in the background of news sites.
As a point of reference, here are some notable news articles involving recent vehicle-into-building collisions around the country:
- A semi-truck plowed into an abandoned building in Montgomery County, Tennessee the day before the Albert Lee appliance store was hit.
- A driver fled the scene after crashing into a downtown Minneapolis building on July 2.
- A stolen Tesla crashed into an L.A. synagogue on the fourth of July.
- Also on July Fourth, three people were trapped inside a car after it plunged into a building in Grand Rapids.
These sorts of crashes happen all the time, but they seem pretty invisible to the public. There are a few factors contributing to this. A lack of central authority dealing specifically with these sorts of incidents helps hide them.
Statistics for Vehicle-Into-Building Crashes
The National Transportation Safety Board fails to record substantial information specifically for vehicle-into-building collisions. It should be noted that the research team which estimates there to be approximately 20 of these vehicle-into-building crashes each day resorted to scouring newspapers and legal filings to capture an accurate understanding of where crashed cars are ending up.
The other factor hiding this breed of accident is that most of them happen to convenience stores. Of the twenty crashes that happen a day, the research group found that at least one of them involves a 7-11.
It’s an industry specific problem that has yet to be addressed, and could easily be fixed with one of a variety of measures, e.g. angled parking or parking bollards.
If you’ve been injured by a careless driver who crashed into a store you where you were shopping, it may be in your best interest to contact a personal injury attorney with experience in that area of law. Exploring your legal options might help you recover pay you missed out on work or job interviews.