Golf carts OK in Tifton - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Golf carts OK in Tifton

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By  Stephanie Springer  - bio | email

ALBANY, GA (WALB) - Prices are also dropping here in Georgia and one South Georgia city has found a way to help residents save even more money on gas.

Move over automobiles, golf carts are emerging in Tifton.

Tifton was the latest city to amend its ordinance allowing people to drive motorized vehicles like golf carts around as an added convenience.

Tift county law enforcement officials say the idea came about last year, when gas prices were high and a lot of people were looking at alternate ways of getting around. While some locals think this is a great idea, others say they have quite a few safety concerns.

You normally find them cruising around on the golf course, but soon residents in Tifton will be seeing more and more of these vehicles on city streets.

Officials in Tifton recently amended its code of ordinances allowing any motorized cart to be operated on any public roadway, that has a posted speed of 35 mph or less.

"The entire rationale is to make the whole city more neighborhood friendly more desirable for a multitude kinds of traffic other than automobiles so I hope it does improve neighborhoods and fuel efficiency in town," said Joe Lewis, Vice Mayor of Tifton.

City officials say the same rules apply to driving golf carts as it does to driving a vehicle. Only licensed drivers can get behind the wheel, and no drinking and driving while operating the cart or else you may get a DUI.

"We need for folks to be aware that there out there and need folks to realize they are out there because they cant take off as fast as a car and they wont be going as fast as a car so people cant come up on them in a hurry, also they have to be a licensed driver I know a lot of folks tell their kids they can go out and ride the golf carts in the evening, but that's not going to be the prupose here." said  Tifton Police Captain John Tyson.

Bob Cartwright drives a golf cart every week on the golf course, but says he has mixed feelings about seeing them on city streets. "If everyone drove 25 miles per hour or 35 miles per hour like their supposed to it might be okay that a golf cart is out there somewhere, but as dusk comes on if they dont abide by the regulations of the rules and the laws, I just think it will be extremely dangerous at first I really do."

City officials say they are already seeing carts out on the roads, and expect for more and more people to pick up on this growing trend.

If you would like to drive your golf cart around the city, you must first register your vehicle with the Tifton Police Department. After the carts been registered you will get a decal that goes on the cart, and your good to go.

ATV's are not included in the ordinance. Authorities say they remain illegal on city streets.

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