Car Park Reversing Collision - Who is at fault?

  • MCP's Avatar
    Hi there

    I need some advice. A few days ago I've been involved in a minor collision in our MCP near my work. What happened was:

    I went around the corner on one of the floors, found a space, drove past it to reverse into the space. At the time no car was behind me. I had my indicator on and started reversing into the space. The next minute, I felt and heard a bit of a scrape; when I looked around, there was another car in the way. Obviously being very annoyed we both got out, this lady started saying that she was stationery and I drove into her (my car's nose scraped past her cars' nose), and I was saying that there was no car when I was reversing, and that she was too close to me. After backwards and forwards arguing, I said we will have to agree to disagree, at which point she started taking pictures and asked for my details. We looked at the damage of both cars, and at the time we couldn't see much damage to her car (no damage on mine). There were few tiny scrape marks. I said it could easily be buffed out, but she was adamant that it will have to go in for repairs. We got to a point where she said it'll probably only cost about £20 to repair, and I said if so, I'll pay that as goodwill gesture. Since then she found more damage to her car, sent it to VW for a quote which came back at £1500. In her first e-mail straight after the incident, she said she will take her car for a quote following my reversal into her stationary car (no other details), and thanked me for agreeing to pay the costs (which I haven't agreed to). She then found more damage, with more paint scraped off and scrape marks on the bumper, sent me pictures and said she will now take it to VW garage for a quote. She sent another e-mail with the quote, saying I will probably use my insurance and asked for my insurance details. I haven't replied to any of her e-mails yet. Any advice will be greatly appreciated.
    I tried to add images but doesn't want to let me; bearing in mind I have no damage to my car.

    Many thanks
  • 3 Replies

  • Beelzebub's Avatar
    @MCP You're obliged by law to give her the details.[Road Traffic Act 1988, s154]
    Obviously you also need to tell your own insurer ASAP.
  • Beelzebub's Avatar
    To answer your question, I'm pretty sure you will be found at fault.

    From your account "At the time no car was behind me" and "there was no car when I was reversing". That implies that you checked before reversing but weren't looking properly thereafter.

    The Highway Code tells you "Reverse slowly while

    • checking all around
    • looking mainly through the rear window"
  • Santa's Avatar
    One of the reasons that we are all paying such high premiums for motor insurance is that modern cars are very easily damaged and replacement parts are expensive.

    In more serious collisions, you will often see one or more cars totally destroyed, but the people inside suffer minor cuts and bruises. Car design allows for "crumple zones" to absorb the energy of an impact. The unfortunate consequence is that they crumple at low speeds and are mostly impossible or uneconomical to repair.