Carolina Town to Phase Out Golf Carts on Streets; Florida Lawmakers Want Age Limit

March 16, 2023

A beach town in North Carolina is cracking down on golf carts on city streets, after the number of carts, unlicensed drivers and accidents has grown in recent years.

The Port City Daily newspaper reported that the town council of Carolina Beach, outside Wilmington, aims to take the carts off its streets by 2028. Starting July 1 of this year, only existing permit holders will be allowed to renew their golf cart licenses. By January 2028, the vehicles will be illegal on public streets, the council decided at a meeting this week.

An assistant town manager said the number of carts has grown as the population has increased. And without license tags and registration, it’s difficult for authorities to track who owns the carts. Many carts are uninsured and are driven by underage drivers, and drivers have been seen without seat belts and with small children in their laps, officials said.

The number one cause of golf cart collisions, officials said, is driver impairment, according to the news article.

Once the ban takes effect, the carts could be converted to “low-speed vehicles” that should be registered and insured, officials said.

Golf carts on public avenues has become a growing concern across the country. In Florida this week, a House Infrastructure Strategies Committee panel approved House Bill 949, which would ban drivers under age 16 from operating carts on roadways unless they hold a driver’s license or learner’s permit.