Golf carts are becoming more popular and have a variety of uses; from transporting church members to and from parking areas, to staff using them for building and grounds maintenance tasks. However, golf carts can have hidden costs and statistics show that about 13,000 people are treated in U.S. emergency rooms each year for injuries caused by golf cart accidents and children under the age of 16 represent one-third of these injuries.
Golf Carts in Your Ministry
Safety is important for any kind of vehicle, and golf carts are no exception. To maximize safety, it’s a good idea to adhere to the following safety guidelines.
- Require a driver’s license: While it may be legal to operate a golf cart without a driver’s license, consider limiting driving privileges to experienced, licensed drivers of at least 18 years old.
- Set a speed limit: Most golf carts travel no faster than 15 miles an hour, but some carts can go up to 25-30 miles per hour. If the maximum speed of the cart exceeds 15 miles an hour, it would be a good idea to set a speed limit. Passengers could be tossed from the vehicle on sharp turns, if the cart hits an obstruction, or pedestrians could be hurt if the cart hits them.
- Take Precautions With Children: Transporting children is dangerous since they may not be able to hold on effectively. If children are allowed on the golf cart, they should not be transported without the presence of an adult. If a parent is helping a child hold on, he/she needs to have one hand free to hold onto the cart. Reduce speed when turning, avoid sharp turns and require every person in the golf cart to remain seated.
- Reduce Distractions: This would include the use of cell phones or other communication devices, eating or drinking.
- Be Careful In Parking Lots: Cars and pedestrians make for a maze of potential accidents. Drivers should exercise special care when moving through parking lots, always yielding to pedestrians and vehicles.
- Passenger Capacity: Do not transport more passengers than the golf cart is designed to carry.
This is just an abbreviated list of some of the more important safety precautions but following these can help ensure the safety of those you’re ministering to.