Golf Cart Lanes
One of the many amenities of living in The Villages is the hundreds of miles of golf cart lanes and multi-modal paths. This enables our golf carts to become a major form of transportation. We can use them to go to the bank, grocery shopping, out to dinner, or even go to the doctor’s office.
Many of the roadways in The Villages are divided into a vehicular lane and a golf cart lane, similar to a 4-lane highway. As with lanes on a multi-lane highway, golf cart lanes merge into vehicular lanes and split from vehicular lanes. Additionally, there are turn lanes placed at some intersections.
When driving your golf cart, you will have to sometimes merge into the vehicular lane of traffic when the golf cart lane is ending or you need to make a left turn. Doing this safely is very similar to changing lanes in your car. Use your turn signals to indicate your intention, check your mirrors for other vehicles behind you, and turn your head to check any blind spots. Additionally, when in your golf cart, it is recommended to use hand signals and if possible, make eye contact with approaching drivers.
Like a standard highway, when the golf cart lane is ending, you can move into the vehicular lane when it is safe to do so. You do not have to wait until the lane ends to merge. When making a left turn, make sure you merge into the vehicular lane before the intersection and then make the left turn from the vehicular lane. Do not make a left turn from the golf cart lane. You can, however make a right turn from the golf cart lane. Remember to always watch for automobiles turning right and crossing the golf cart lane. When driving your golf cart, always stay alert and drive defensively.
You can learn more about golf cart safety at the monthly clinic sponsored by The VHA. They are held at 9:00 a.m. on the third Wednesday of each month. Go to the VHA website (https://www.thevha.net/) or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
by Mike Cullipher, The VHA Golf Cart Safety Instructor