Golf Carts in Your Ministry
Golf carts have become popular at campgrounds, college campuses, and megachurches. They’re affordable, easy to operate, and a convenient way to transport people and supplies. Many people enjoy zipping around in these breezy miniature vehicles, especially young people itching to get behind the wheel of a vehicle of their own.
Develop Golf Cart Safety Policy
- Require a driver’s license. While it may be legal to operate a golf cart without a driver’s license in your state, consider limiting driving privileges to experienced, licensed drivers.
- Set a speed limit. Most golf carts travel no faster than 16 miles an hour, but some carts can go up to 25 miles an hour. If the maximum speed of ministry carts exceeds 16 miles an hour, it would be prudent to set a speed limit. Passengers could be tossed from the vehicle if the cart hits an obstruction, and pedestrians could be hurt if a cart strikes them.
- Establish cart paths. Golf carts are not designed to travel through mud and over tree branches. Setting out a distinct cart path can help keep passengers safe and prolong the life of the cart. Driving paths should be relatively flat and dry.
- Be careful in parking lots. Roaming cars and pedestrians make for a maze of potential accidents. Drivers should take care when moving through parking lots, always yielding to pedestrians and automobiles.
- Reduce distractions. Discourage the use of cell phones, side conversations, and eating while driving, which can distract the driver.
- Follow manufacturer guidelines. Golf carts come with instructional manuals that deal with safety issues. Follow the manufacturers’ safety guidelines.
- Ban night driving. Driving a golf cart after dark is very dangerous, because the typical cart isn’t equipped with headlights. Consider storing carts in a secure, locked location overnight.
- Make safety clear. Consider putting a sign in the cart advising drivers and passengers of important safety rules, such as the ones detailed below.
Require Driver Training
- Don’t drive a golf cart unless you hold a valid state driver’s license.
- Never allow more passengers than seats available.
- Require every person in the golf cart to remain seated at all times.
- Always look before backing up.
- Keep arms and legs inside the cart while it’s in motion.
- Follow a distinct, approved cart path for travel.
- Only make slow, controlled turns, as golf carts are often top heavy and can topple if a quick turn is made.
- Wait until the golf cart comes to a complete stop before entering or exiting the cart.
- Never drive a golf cart after dark.
- When a golf cart is not in use, remove the keys and set its parking brake to make sure no one drives unattended.