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fore-wheeled wisdom: 5 golf cart safety tips

We know, we know — how hard can it be to drive a golf cart, right? As it happens, there's more to it than just avoiding sand traps and stray chip shots. Golf carts can go far beyond the links these days, and we'll share some pro tips for riding safely as you hit the street, trail, and beyond.

Golf cart accident statistics

It's easy to view golf carts more as novelties than true motor vehicles. But the fact is they pose similar risks as your car or motorcycle, especially when taken off the golf course.

Here are some golf cart accident statistics to keep in mind as you approach these 4-wheeled favorites:

  • Turning at just 11 mph is fast enough to easily throw passengers out of a cart
  • Over 10,000 emergency room visits each year result from golf cart accidents, according to the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC)
  • About 40 percent of golf cart accidents involve someone falling out of the vehicle; and roughly 10 percent involve a rollover, per CPSC data

5 ways to improve golf cart safety

Whether you're renting a golf cart on the links, getting a fleet for work, or buying one for personal use around the campus or community, here are some pointers to help you stay on par with golf cart safety.

1. Wear your seat belt

Whether you're the driver or the passenger, strapping yourself in is a big part of golf cart safety. And if your only option is a golf cart that isn't equipped with seat belts at all, look for another one or don't ride at all.

2. Slow down when turning

If you've been driving cars for years, you may be accustomed to accelerating through turns without a second thought. This, of course, is because you've always had the luxury of a door to hold you and your passengers in. In a golf cart, this isn't the case.

To help keep everyone tucked safely inside, approach turns slowly and with extreme caution.

3. Honk the horn at intersections

Loud, sudden noises may be taboo on the golf course, but off it, they can be lifesavers. See, your golf cart's lack of size can make it hard to spot in traffic. That's why it pays to make yourself known ahead of time by tapping the horn before going through intersections.

4. Don't drink while driving

This may seem like a no-brainer to some, but it bears mentioning. Whether you're playing 18 holes, doing light yard work, or cruising a beach resort, there are times when cracking a cold one while driving your golf cart seems not only permissible but common. However, this is a dangerous misconception.

Remember, golf carts are subject to the same traffic laws and dangers as regular old cars.

5. Avoid sidewalks

Just because a safe speed for your golf cart is roughly walking pace doesn't mean you should actually accompany those on foot. The safest riding route is typically on the street or designated recreational trails (where bikers and joggers know to expect you).

Of course, golf cart safety doesn't end with these tips. To help ensure a successful ride each and every time, follow the same traffic laws and common sense guidelines you would in your car.

Golf cart insurance from Esurance

Even by following these tips, there's no guaranteeing each and every ride will turn out incident-free (we're all only human, after all). That's why it helps to back up your 4-wheeled cruiser with golf cart insurance.

Esurance motorcycle insurance covers a wide range of pleasure vehicles, including Segways, snowmobiles, and golf carts. We'll protect your ride year-round with options like liability insurance to help pay for others' injuries if you cause an accident, comprehensive coverage to help replace your cart if it's stolen, and much more.

Get your golf cart insurance quote to get started!

Related links

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