Most people at one point or another will ride in a golf cart, even if they do not play golf. Golf carts are very common now not only on golf courses, but also on college campuses, in parking lots, airports, and retirement communities. Although convenient, these carts can now drive at speeds of up to 40 miles an hour and are used without normal safety precautions, which can put riders at great risk of harm.
Although golf carts can travel at high speeds, they are not considered automobiles. They are not regulated the same way as other vehicles since they are not intended for use on roads. They do not need to meet Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards and are not required to have seat belts. They are allowed to be built with low safety standards because of the lack of attention paid to them. In addition, golf carts do not require a driver’s license to operate.
Golf carts have a variety of inherent dangers. First, they are lightweight and have very small tires, which can make them prone to tip over. They are often driven on uneven terrain, which can jostle them and cause them to become unbalanced. Golf carts do not come with seat belts or restraints for the passengers. The vehicles have open sides so passengers can get in and out easily, which allows passengers to be ejected from the carts in the event of an accident. Finally, many facilities do not maintain their golf carts, which can cause brakes and other critical parts of the cart to become warn out.
A study found that between 1990 and 2006, there were almost 150,000 visits to emergency rooms because of injuries involving golf carts. The most common cause of injury was falling out of the golf cart. Over the 17 year period, the number of accidents gradually increased. Tragically, between 2001 and 2006, there were 33 golf cart fatalities reported. Another study looked at the injuries involved in golf cart accidents and found that the most common injuries are cuts, lacerations and bruises, broken bones, brain injuries, and fatalities.
With thousands of golf cart accidents occurring every year, there are many people who are left injured or are killed due to the unsafe use of golf carts. These accidents commonly occur on the premises of a business, so in many cases there is liability for the business owner. If you or a family member has been injured or killed in an accident involving a golf cart, you should speak with an attorney. You may be entitled to compensation for your medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and more.
At Liberty Law, Micha Star Liberty and Seth I. Rosenberg believe that businesses should be held liable for any accident in which their negligence played a role. If you have been injured in a golf cart accident, call the San Francisco personal injury attorneys at Liberty Law at 510-645-1000 or 415-896-1000. We will provide you with a free consultation on your case. If we choose to take your case, you pay us nothing until we recover compensation for you. If you are in the San Francisco area, including Tracy, Hayward, Fairfield, San Jose, Berkeley, and the surrounding areas, and you have been involved in an accident, call the personal injury attorneys at Liberty Law. You may be entitled to compensation for your damages, and your family members may be able to recover damages as well. Call today to learn more or to schedule your free consultation.