No license? – No driving golf carts

  • Thursday, June 5, 2014

Golf carts can be driven on secondary roads by a licensed driver. For example, “It is legal on Mathis Ferry as it is a secondary road with a 35 mph speed limit. If no seat belts are installed, the law regarding seat belts cannot be enforced,” according to Inspector Chip Googe, Mount Pleasant Police Department PHOTO PROVIDED

Golf carts seem like an easy way to scoot around the neighborhood or run up to the store.

But golf carts, without proper supervision and a good understanding of the laws, can be dangerous.

Before carting off with an infant in your lap or numerous children piled on, golf cart owners should think twice.

There are state laws that govern their use, to include no alcohol, no unlicensed drivers and more.

There are now an estimated 15,000 golf cart-related accidents requiring emergency room treatment in the U.S. each year, with the majority of injuries due to braking, cart rollover or passenger ejection. The open-air design makes it very easy for a passenger to fall out. Some vehicles are being up-fitted these days to make them “road legal,” but those often seen cruising through the neighborhood are not typically so equipped.

Because of the numerous complaints coming into the police department, a system was created several years ago to log violators into a database.

On the first offense, the children and parents are educated about the laws. If a second violation occurs, the adult or guardian can be cited.

To help keep everyone safe, the Mount Pleasant Police Department would like to remind everyone of the South Carolina laws governing golf cart use:

– A person operating a golf cart must be at least 16 years of age and have a valid driver's license.

– A golf cart may only be operated during daylight hours and must be within four miles of the address on the registration certificate.

– The golf cart must have a registration certificate from the DMV and have liability insurance.

– During daylight hours, a permitted golf cart may operate along a secondary highway or street for which the posted speed limit is 35 miles an hour or less.

– During daylight hours, a permitted golf cart may be operated within four miles of a point of ingress and egress to a gated community and only on a secondary highway or street for which the posted speed limit is 35 miles an hour or less.

If you have any questions about the laws governing golf carts, please contact Crime Prevention Officer Bryce Gregory at bgregory@tompsc.com or Twitter (@mountpleasantpd) and Facebook.

For more updates from the desk of the Moultrie News editor, Sully Witte, please follow Sully's Scoop on Twitter @SullysScoop and like Sully's Scoop Facebook page.

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