Georgia Golf Cart Crashes Can Result In Severe Injuries
There are thousands of golf cart-related injury victims that require treatment in an emergency room throughout the U.S. each year according to the Consumer Products Safety Commission (CPSC). The CPSC also indicates that about forty percent of the time people are thrown from the cart; many of those injured are small children and teenagers. Rollover accidents involving golf carts are particularly dangerous and make up approximately ten percent of golf cart accidents.
Frequently, passengers are thrown from a golf cart when the driver takes a sharp turn or travels at a high rate of speed down a sharp incline. Because golf carts are not required by ANSI (the American National Standards Institute) to have seat belts, the lack of seat belts leaves passengers vulnerable to falling out of or off the back of golf carts. The carts often times have handholds located on the sides of the seat that are supposed to help people hold on and remain in the cart. These might not be effective at keeping a person in the cart during a collision or after a golf cart rolls over.
Many of those injured in golf cart accidents are small children and teens. Children cannot reach the floor of the carts with their feet so they may have to rely on the small hip handhold to try and stay in the golf cart. Because of their inability to use their feet to help them stay on the golf cart, they are much more likely to be thrown from a golf cart if the cart makes a sharp turn at a high rate of speed. Many golf carts have powerful engines that permit them to travel as rapidly as passenger vehicles.
A fatal Peachtree City golf car accident earlier this year serves as a tragic example of the potential danger when inexperienced driver operate a golf cart. A 15-year-old passenger in the golf cart suffered a severe brain injury and multiple fractures after the teenager who was driving the golf cart lost control of the vehicle and slammed the golf cart into a tree. The teenager who was driving the golf cart was only 15 so the police indicated that the driver would likely face criminal charges for underage driving since the Peachtree City requires anyone operating a golf cart to be at least 16 unless an adult is also riding in the golf cart.
Many golf cart accidents are caused by negligent operators that engage in high risk conduct, such as:
- Driving too fast
- Operating a golf cart while intoxicated
- Texting or talking on a cell phone while driving
- Failing to remain within lanes designated for golf carts
When parents entrust a golf cart to an underage driver or a teen that the parent knows lacks the knowledge and competence to operate the golf cart safely, the owner of the golf cart may also be liable for injuries to passengers injured in a crash or fall from the golf cart depending on the specific circumstances.
Both rollover accidents and accidents involving occupants falling from a golf cart frequently result in catastrophic or fatal injuries. A golf cart accident can result in traumatic brain injury, spinal cord damage, broken bones and other injuries that can result in permanent disability or impairment. If you or a loved one have been injured in a golf cart related accident, you may be eligible for compensation for your injuries.
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