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Who's Responsible if There's No Lighting In a Parking Lot?

October 20, 2022 | Category: Automobile Accidents | Share

Recently, a number of people arriving, and leaving, a restaurant at night in Gulf Coast Town Center in Estero, FL, noticed a totally "black" parking lot.  No lights anywhere.  No indication of where a step may be or where the sidewalk ended, and the parking lot began.  No restaurant management or employee was outside helping patrons even though they were aware the parking lot lights were not working. 

Who is responsible if there is no lighting in a parking lotHow many times have you found yourself in a dark parking lot? Whether it is inclement weather, equipment failure, a timer that was set to prematurely turn off the lights, or any other reason, there are no valid excuses for ineffective lighting in parking lots and a lack of management response to protect customers.

Many hidden dangers in parking lots become even more dangerous if they are not properly illuminated, such as:


Even when there is adequate lighting, many people do not realize there are different types of curbs, heights, and breaks in curbs. When a parking lot is poorly illuminated, or not illuminated at all, accidents are waiting to happen.

Wheel Stops

Wheel stops are placed in parking lots to help vehicles park appropriately in the spaces. These low concrete barriers are potential hazards that can be unnoticeable when walking back to a vehicle. Occasionally, they may be even misplaced or in disrepair.


When parking lots receive a lot of wear and tear from use and exposure to the elements, they become a potential for slip and fall accidents caused by potholes. Not seeing a pothole can cause foot fractures or even head injuries if a person strikes his/her head when falling on the pavement. Should a pedestrian fall in an inadequately illuminated parking lot, they may be in danger of being hit by a moving vehicle unable to see them.

There are various reasons a parking lot may be inadequately lit including using the incorrect wattage bulbs, improper placement of lights, obstructions such as tree limbs not adequately cut back, and/or poor maintenance. None of these reasons are acceptable and can cause slips, trips, and/or falls.

The University of Wisconsin Accident Prevention: Slips, Trips, and Falls points out there is an increased danger when moving from light to dark areas, or vice versa, which can cause temporary vision problems making it difficult to see obstacles and notice changes in walking surfaces. Inadequate parking lot lighting is even more dangerous.

The National Safety Council (NSC) ranks falls as "one of the leading causes of unintentional injuries in the United States, accounting for approximately 8.9 million visits to the emergency departments annually."

Whose responsibility is it if there is a slip and fall accident in a parking lot?

All states have legal statutes defining the specific duty of care owed by landowners to everyone using their property. These laws protect those who are accident victims because of a property owner’s negligence, and they allow victims to pursue compensation for a variety of damages. This is referred to as premises liability.

According to Florida Premises Liability laws, the property owner, management company, and/or tenant could be held responsible for accidents caused by poor lighting in the parking lot if they knew about the condition and failed to act.   

Slip and Fall Accident Attorney Randall Spivey of Spivey Law Firm, Personal Injury Attorneys, P.A. recommends, "Should you or someone you know be injured as the result of a slip and fall accident in the parking lot of a restaurant, theater, grocery store, department store, park, a swimming facility, school or other public premises, there are some steps you should take:

How To Know if You Have a Personal Injury/Premises Liability Claim?

Under Florida Premises Liability laws, claims for financial compensation are based on fault or negligence. Should someone else be at fault, an accident victim may be entitled to recover losses, both financial and non-financial. The Florida slip and fall accident team has the experience to help accident victims prove they are entitled to recover compensation for injuries. We need to prove:

  • The cause of the injuries
  • The extent of injuries
  • The long-term effects of the injuries

To gather proof, Spivey Law Firm, Personal Injury Attorneys, P.A. will:

  • Obtain relevant evidence that can include videos, witness statements, relevant records, and other evidence
  • Prove our client sought follow-up medical treatment and followed the physician’s orders
  • Document the effect of the injuries before and after the accident, and ongoing into the future

You may contact us 24/7 at 239.337.7483, toll-free at 1.888.477.4839, or online at There are no costs or attorney fees until we receive a monetary recovery for you.






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Fort Myers, Florida 33912

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