Can You Drive a Golf Cart on The Road in Michigan?
Customized golf carts are becoming increasingly popular in many cities across Michigan. They’re cheaper than other vehicles, quiet, and super convenient. We’ve received a large amount of questions regarding their legality, so we have put together this blog post to address most of the questions.
There are vehicles designed to traverse roads, and there are those made for recreational sports like golf. In the case of golf carts, the legality of actually driving it on roads is a bit unclear. This is because there are parts in Michigan where one can legally drive it on roads, and there are places where it is illegal to do so.
The main concern is always driver and passenger safety. Just because it’s a golf cart doesn’t mean that injuries are less likely. In fact, without the safety features of a more modern vehicle such as seat belts and air bags, injuries resulting from a golf cart and vehicle crash can be severe and have lift altering consequences.
Here is a quick guide on Michigan laws on driving golf carts on roads.
Can Golf Carts Be Driven in Michigan Roads?
The answer is: it depends. The legality surrounding the act of driving a golf cart on a Michigan road depends on a couple of factors, such as where it is being driven and how fast the golf cart is going, among others.
In general, golf carts are only allowed on roads in small communities with less than 30 mph speed limits. However, depending on the small community, they may lay down a few requirements for golf cart drivers. Examples of these include an age requirement, needing a driver’s license, and having a minimum and maximum speed limit. Golf cart drivers may also be required to record their carts on the village’s list.
Michigan Golf Cart Law in Detail
Michigan has its own Golf Cart Law to help its people have an organized guide when it comes to driving golf carts on roads. Here are some of the most important sections of this Michigan law:
- Small villages may pass resolutions to allow the driving of golf carts.
Michigan classifies towns, cities, and villages with less than 30,000 as “small villages.” If the population in a certain community is under the maximum number of residents, they can pass resolutions allowing the operation of golf carts in their area.
- There is an age requirement in driving golf carts in Michigan.
Not all people can drive golf carts, no matter how simple driving one can be. For example, in Michigan, only people at least 16 years old are allowed to operate golf carts on the street. In addition to the age requirement, the individual should also have a license to operate motor vehicles.
- Villages can require golf cart drivers to register their vehicles.
Technically, golf carts cannot be considered legitimate vehicles. However, these are still motor vehicles that serve the function of helping individuals go from one place to the next.
Therefore, villages have the authority to require drivers to register the golf carts before allowing them to be driven around in their community. This is done in order to still instill a sense of responsibility and accountability to drivers.
- Villages can mandate golf cart operators to comply with equipment requirements.
Golf carts need to be safe for driving before being allowed on roads. Villages that allow golf carts to be on their roads may require golf cart drivers to have minimum standard equipment like turn signals, brake lights, stop lamps, headlamps, mirrors, and red reflectors, among others.
- Never drive golf carts on interstate highways.
In general, you cannot drive golf carts on highways. However, there are still exceptions to this rule. For example, golf carts may be operated on state trunk line highways briefly while crossing from one village or street to another. But on interstate highways, golf carts are never allowed to hit the road.
- Golf carts cannot be driven at night.
For the benefit of drivers and pedestrians, golf carts cannot be driven at night. This is to avoid road accidents related to the lack of obvious visibility of golf carts, especially as the evening approaches. As a rule of thumb, golf carts cannot operate half an hour before sunset and half an hour after sunrise.
What is the Michigan Slow Moving Vehicle Law?
In Michigan, one cannot drive slow-moving vehicles for more than 25 mph. Since golf carts may fall under this category, drivers and operators must abide by this law. While agricultural vehicles can be driven at speeds less than 25 mph, you can only drive golf carts at 15 mph at most.
Can I be Arrested For Drunk Driving in a Golf Cart
The simple answer to this question, is a resounding yes. Golf carts are still counted as a motorized vehicle under Michigan law. If you are arrested for drunk driving in a golf cart, you will still face severe consequences. You could be facing hefty fines, the loss of your driver’s license, and jail time.
Learn More About Driving Golf Carts on Michigan Roads with The Clark Law Office
There are so many things to know about driving golf carts in Michigan. Apart from the legality of driving the golf cart, you should also know if insurance covers it, how drivers can apply for compensation, and how the no-fault benefits work in relation to golf cart-related accidents.
If you want to learn more about driving golf carts in Michigan, reach out to an experienced law firm like The Clark Law Office. You may call us at (517) 347-6900 or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.