By Najah Morgan
Parking decks can be scary settings for some people, and sometimes concerns about safety, security, driving and lighting arise.
Youngstown State University has two parking decks on campus — one at the corner of Fifth and Lincoln avenues and another on Wick Avenue.
Shawn Varso, chief of police at YSU, said when a person is walking in a parking deck or parking lot at night, he or she should have situational awareness.
“Try to always park where there is a lot of light, a lot of visibility around there. Park close to a pedestrian light if you can, and park where there are other cars.” Varso said.
Varso advised YSU community members to have their keys ready to open their car door, to not have earbuds in and to examine the back and front seat to make sure there isn’t anything out of the ordinary.
“If anything ever gives you a sudden pause, immediately go to a place where there are people and phone the police.” Varso said.
YSU also provides a security escort service, often utilized by those who aren’t comfortable walking to their cars at night.
Madison Landgraff, junior exercise science major, said her main concern with the parking decks is people driving too fast and not paying attention. Otherwise, she said she feels safe.
“I do feel like they’re doing a really good job, especially with the security,” she said.
Gabriella Orenic, freshman pre-medical biology major, said the parking decks should have a clearer explanation of how cars are supposed to move in and out of them.
“I was in an accident in the Fifth Avenue parking deck because I was on the top floor and there was an exit, and there was no arrow directing whether to go in or out,” she said. “So, I went down and that was actually the exit. Because of that I had to side swipe the wall to avoid getting in an accident [with another car],” Orenic said.
Varso said if anyone sees or hears of any suspicious activity happening in the parking decks, the YSU Police Department should immediately be notified.