Golf Cart and Low Speed Vehicle Use

  GOLF CART LAWS  

  • Golf cart must have a state DMV golf cart permit.  (You can obtain the permit at any state DMV office by showing proof of ownership and insurance.)  (An ATV is not a golf cart, if DMV issues a permit to an ATV in error, it is not valid.)
  • Operator must have a valid Driver's License.
  • Golf carts can be operated during daylight hours only.
  • Can only be operated within 4 miles of residence.
  • Can only be operated on a secondary highway or street.
  • May not be operated on a primary highway but can cross over a primary highway.  (This means straight across, not at an angle.)  (Palmetto Blvd is a primary highway (SC 174), both 4 lanes and 2 lanes and runs from the town limits all the way to the marina.)
  • Open container law and all other motor vehicle parking laws apply to golf carts.

The law prohibits golf carts from being upgraded by adding equipment to convert the cart to a Low Speed Vehicle (LSV). A golf cart can never be legally operated after dark. 

LOW SPEED VEHICLES (LSV)

In accordance with South Carolina code of law 56-2-100, a Low Speed Vehicle is a four-wheeled vehicle whose speed attainable in one mile is more than twenty miles per hour (20 mph) and not more than twenty-five miles per hour (25 mph). A LSV may be operated only on a highway for which the posted speed limit is 35 miles an hour or less. Like a golf cart, an LSV may cross a primary highway or at an intersection where the highway has a posted speed limit of more than 35 miles per hour but cannot travel along these highways or streets. Like a golf cart, an LSV can only be operated by a person with a valid driver's license, a permit from the Department of Motor Vehicles and proof of insurance. The state will not title or register homemade Low Speed Vehicles. A LSV can only be operated on roads having speed limits of thirty-five miles per hour (35 mph) or less. A LSV is factory equipped with windshield wipers, rear-view and side-view mirrors, speedometer, turn signals, horn, DOT headlights, taillights, and seatbelts. A LSV may be operated after dark.