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Why parking is getting harder

parking station

Do you think it’s getting harder to park? If you live in the city, it’s getting harder because many cars have outgrown the standard size parking space. This means there’s more chance of damage while parked. Find out whether your green slip covers you for car park accidents or prangs and scrapes.

Have cars got bigger?

It is true, cars have certainly got bigger. The standard parking space is 2.4–2.6m wide x 5.4m long, so there’s not much room to make a mistake. Here are some popular vehicles in 1993-94 and now:

Vehicle Width x length then Width x length now
1993 Toyota HiLux dual-cab ute 1.69m x 4.86m 1.85m x 5.32m
1994 Toyota Rav 4 1.69m x 3.72m 1.86m x 4.6m
1994 Mazda 323/3 1.68m x 4.22m 1.8m x 4.46m

Meanwhile, popular American pick-ups like the RAM 1500 are 2.24m x 5.83m and easily overflow the standard space.

Many car parks have become crowded and spaces are tight because of what one journalist dubbed “a vehicular obesity epidemic”. Even in 2017, greenslips.com.au asked the question: should parking spaces be bigger?

Should parking spaces be bigger?

Standards Australia now thinks so. After 18 years, it wants to increase the length of a standard parking space from 5.4m to 5.6m.

In 2004, when its standard was last reviewed, 13% of Australia’s registered vehicles were SUVs. Today about 40% are SUVs. The authority uses two broad classes of vehicle to set the parking standard: a large family sedan, such as a Toyota Camry, and a dual-cab ute, such as a Toyota HiLux.

While making spaces bigger will help motorists with bigger vehicles, it means more space must be set aside for parking. This is the opposite of what’s happening in other cities. Making parking spaces bigger encourages the status quo of bigger vehicles.

Does my green slip cover prangs in carparks?

That depends. Your green slip doesn’t cover your vehicle or the vehicle and property of others. However, a green slip covers prangs in carparks if someone is killed or injured. It provides for compensation for anyone who is killed or injured in a road accident involving your vehicle.

For example, if you inadvertently back into and injure a pedestrian in a busy retail car park, they will be covered by your green slip. However, the sum of benefits payable and for how long are dependent on fault.

Does my green slip cover me if I parallel park and scrape the car in front?

No. Your green slip covers you only for people, not property. If you scrape the car in front, you need to be covered by third party property or comprehensive insurance to pay the bill. In a recent Budget Direct survey, only 6% admitted at the time they were the cause of someone else’s parking scrape. Some 15% said their car had been damaged at some time while parked.

Does parking technology give me a cheaper green slip?

You may get a cheaper green slip with a newer car, as they tend to have some kind of assistance technology. However, the price of a green slip is dependent on more than the age and technology of your vehicle. In the Budget Direct survey, nearly half said they were happy to have reversing cameras and parking sensors to help them park. However, 63% said they would pay more to buy a fully self-parking car and 3% had already done so.

However, overreliance on technology to do the driving and parking can cause complacency and even accidents.

Read more about it on our greenslips.com.au blogs:

The trouble with parking
Just looking for parking

author image

Corrina Baird

Writer and Researcher, greenslips.com.au

Corrina used to lend her car to her kids and discovered what Ls, Ps and demerits mean for greenslips. After 20 years in financial services and over 8 years with greenslips.com.au, she’s an expert in the NSW CTP scheme. Read more about Corrina

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