The golf cart has primarily been viewed as a leisure vehicle to use on the links or to quickly get around an expansive area. The thought of it being as dangerous as an automobile might strike some individuals as odd or a rarity, but a company that reconstructs accidents stated that someone dies every week after falling out of a golf cart.
The Scope of the Problem
Studies of this continuing problem have shown that there are anywhere from 13,000-15,000 golf cart accidents every year that send people to the emergency room. Also, from 1990-2006, there was a 132 percent increase in these accidents.
Youths in Danger
Children and golf carts don’t seem like a natural connection, but approximately one-third of those injured in these type of accidents are minors. These range from teenagers all the way down to infants. The main reason is that some children as young as 13 are allowed to legally operate a golf cart.
Reasons for Accidents
What potentially makes golf carts even more dangerous than automobiles in this instances is that regulations rarely, if ever, require that seat belts or other restraining device be installed in carts. That leaves anyone in them vulnerable to potential catastrophe. In addition, left turns tend to cause many of the accidents, since there’s no hand rail for passengers to grab.
Just as rollover accidents can be deadly or fatal in standard vehicles, the risk is just as prevalent when it comes to golf carts. They take place in approximately 10 percent of these type of accidents, and usually result in very serious injuries, if not death.
Also, since brakes are not installed on all four wheels, when rear-wheel brakes are needed, a cart will begin to fishtail. That causes the driver to begin losing control of the cart, and is especially dangerous when riding on a sloped hill.
The golf cart develops enough speed to injure both those in the vehicle and in its path. While they’re only set to go less than 15 miles per hour (MPH), many have been modified to go as fast as 25 MPH.
Greater Awareness of the Issue
In short, the casual appearance of a golf cart belies the hidden dangers that make it a potential weapon, something that people need to be aware of when they get on one.