BEAUFORT CO., SC (WTOC) - It's been an ongoing debate in Beaufort County. Should golf carts be allowed out on the roads after dark?
Former South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley signed a measure supporting this use. Now, it's up to the county to decide on it.
To put it simply, it's a work in progress. The committee knows folks want a decision on this to happen soon. But at the county's workshop meeting on Monday, they discussed several concerns that need to be addressed first.
The three big concerns here with the nighttime use of golf carts are safety, visibility and regulation. The problem they are seeing is that golf carts are not standard like cars, so they are discussing several regulations: lighting requirements, turn signals, seat belts, child seats, requiring insurance and setting a midnight curfew for these golf carts.
There are municipalities who were represented Monday, showing their support, including the towns of Port Royal, Bluffton, Beaufort, and Daufuskie Island. But it's up to the county to decide what measures need to be taken and how far to extend them.
"Well, I think safety is the big one. The sheriff was here today. He talked about it. Obviously, it's not so much the people driving the golf carts, it's really the people who are driving the vehicles. You don't want them to run over a golf cart. So yeah, safety is probably the top three issues and I'm not sure if there are any that fall after that. So it is a safety issue," said Public Facilities Chairman Stu Rodman.
At the next meeting, the committee plans to look at golf cart ordinances set by other coastal areas like St. Simons and Jekyll Island in Georgia. But they made it clear that the ultimate decision still has some ways to go.