There are two main reasons why your parking lot should always be in good condition. The first reason is aesthetics and the second one is referred to as ‘premises liability”.
You want to make a good impression on anyone who visits your business. Good upkeep of the physical plant with parking lot repairs sets the stage for everything else. Remember, you never get a second change to make a first impression!
“Premises liability” refers to any accidents such as a trip-and-fall or damage to a vehicle that is caused by improperly maintained parking lots and might be grounds for a lawsuit. In many states, all costs from medical care, long-term therapy, medications, lost time from work and pain and suffering can be calculated into an award. If a pothole or other asphalt hazard leads to an injury, the owner and management company can be held financially responsible for substandard pavement conditions.
All asphalt and concrete pavement is subject to wear and tear over time. The older the pavement, the more likely the parking lot needs asphalt repair. However, special circumstances can accelerate damage
to a parking lot. If heavy industrial vehicles roll over the pavement, it can cause pavement cracks. Other factors that can damage existing pavement are: utility companies cutting into the asphalt to install pipes, and vegetation and tree roots can also cause damage.
Surface breaks of any kind – including those that result from seasonal temperature fluctuations and extreme weather – allow moisture to percolate below the surface, where it undermines the integrity of the pavement. In freeze-thaw conditions, water turned into ice expands, creating room for more water and additional instability. As the pavement crumbles, a pothole can open up. But even without freezing, the layers of gravel and earth below the pavement are compromised and can cause disrepair.
The risks of not attending to such issues in a timely manner include making your business appear to be crumbling along with the asphalt itself. For any organization that invests in marketing or employee recruitment, a deteriorating parking area can reduce returns on those investments. Of course, if you are selling your property, broken pavement can be a distraction and even a price-reducing negotiation point.
However, it is the financial risk of a possible lawsuit stemming from a trip-and-fall accident that can be the biggest potential problem. Injuries from simple falls can include brain trauma and even death, which can bring legal judgments of a million dollars or more against the property owner. Your property insurance may cover your costs, or it may not. And as anyone who purchases insurance knows, a loss experience almost always leads to higher premiums for the policyholder.
The simple solution? Call us at Marino Paving for a quote on repairing or repaving your parking lot.