Do Traffic Laws Apply to Golf Carts?

Posted by Tara Ann Garrett on Jun 7, 2018 3:25:00 PM

Do Golf Carts Have to Obey Traffic LawsWhether you already own a golf cart or you're thinking about picking one up before the start of summer, it's important to know what rules you'll have to follow while driving one.

Here are some common questions people have about which traffic laws also apply to golf cart drivers:

Do Golf Carts Have to Obey Traffic Signs?

Golf carts definitely need to follow the rules of the road! They are considered vehicles, just like cars, trucks, and SUV. Any golf cart that heads out on the road needs to obey traffic signs and signals, including stop signs, yield signs, pedestrian crossings, and stop lights.

Failure to follow traffic signs or signals can result in citations or fines, and also lost points on your license.

The next time you're taking your golf cart out on the road, make sure to be aware of traffic signs and their meanings, and follow the instructions they give. Obeying traffic laws doesn't just prevent fines or keep you from potentially losing your license, it also helps to keep you and your family safe. 

Do golf carts have to use turn signals?

The short answer to this question is yes! While you probably won't get a ticket for making a turn without using turn or hand signals, it is still considered state law to do so.

However, even if you don't think you'll get a ticket, using the proper signals before and during turns will help minimize the risk of an accident  by alerting the drivers of larger vehicles to your presence.

Do golf carts have to follow the speed limit?

An unmodified golf cart engine can't reach speeds over 20 mile per hour, so South Carolina laws stipulate that golf cart drivers are only allowed on roads with a posted speed limit of 35 MPH or less.

While you're not going to break any speed records in a golf cart, the minimum speed limit is still important to follow. It can be dangerous if you're going significantly slower than posted speed limit and another vehicle comes around the corner at a normal pace.

The one exception to this rule is if you're crossing a street with a posted speed limit above 35 MPH.

Golf cart drivers are allowed to do this but be extra careful that the coast is clear before crossing. If you see a stop light or sign, make sure to obey those as well.

Is it ok to drink and drive on a golf cart?

Absolutely not. While someone more interested in convenience than safety might be tempted to think it's ok because golf carts move so much slower than a typical street vehicle, it is against the law and just plain dangerous for you and the people around you to drive a golf cart under the influence.

If you get caught driving a golf cart under the influence of alcohol or other controlled substances, you can be charged the exact same way someone driving a regular vehicle would be.

The rules of the road are there for a reason and it's important regardless of the vehicle you're driving to follow them. Get out there and have fun with your golf cart, but make sure you're being safe too!

If you have any questions about what you can and can't do while driving a golf cart, we'd be happy to answer them! If you're just doing research because you're thinking about getting a new or pre-owned golf cart, we can help with that too. Just give us a call or contact us online! You can reach us at (864) 862 7709 for Greenville, or (843) 881 8894 for Charleston, or just contact us online at any time!

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Topics: Garrett's Golf Car Advice, Safety Tips