Although a golf cart accident may not result in a fatal accident, any time a guest has an incident at your facility is an opportunity for improvement. Stay safe on the course with these tips.
Summertime is a great time to tee off. Your guests will be enjoying the warm weather and taking their clubs to the courses. At the same time, your staff will be working hard to keep the club in pristine condition and optimizing your guests’ experiences – and that upkeep doesn’t stop at your grounds, either. With more guests on your golf course, you’ll also be renting out more golf carts, as well. While they may seem completely safe and easy to use, that doesn’t mean that they’re hazard-free.
The fact is, any motor vehicle has the potential to be dangerous. Online insurance company Esurance reports that:
- Passengers can be thrown out of a golf cart at just 11 MPH
- Golf cart accidents result in 10,000 emergency room visits each year
- Of the accidents that happen, 40 percent are from someone falling out of the vehicle, and 10 percent result from a rollover
Although a golf cart accident may not result in a fatal accident, any time a guest has an incident at your facility is an opportunity for improvement. And, we all know that these incidents can create major headaches in the form of lawsuits, audits and more. This summer, make sure your members stay safe with these key tips.
Renting and Operating Golf Carts
Unfortunately, you can’t be with your guests at all times to ensure they use equipment safely, so that’s why we recommend that you:
- Limit the operation of golf carts only to members with a valid driver’s license
- Create a list of operating rules and guidelines and providing a copy upon rental
- Provide a contract with the guidelines, as well as other safety rules, for guests to sign before getting the keys
- Post signs on the course and in other club areas that promote using golf carts safely
- Train your staff to recognize unsafe usage and enforce rules
Golf Cart Maintenance
Like any asset in your facility, golf carts need to be properly maintained as part of your preventive maintenance program. Make sure that you pay attention to the manufacturer guidelines and requirements, too. In addition, daily maintenance should be performed by your team. Nationwide Insurance recommends checking them at the beginning of the day and after each use for any visible damage as well as its safety features, including steering, brakes and reverse alarms. If you notice that a cart has any damage or doesn’t function properly, make sure that it’s repaired and not used until it’s fixed.
It goes without saying that you should ensure that your golf course is maintained daily, but that goes for any pathway that the carts may travel on, too. Keep these areas free of debris, trash or anything else that can potential be a hazard.
Storing your golf carts is just as important as operating them. Nationwide Insurance recommends that you keep golf cart charging areas away from flammable materials, including any equipment with internal combustion engines. In addition, ensure that these areas have proper ventilation. For the batteries themselves, you need to keep these in areas where they are approved as a Class I, Division 1 location.
We also recommend that you keep a central area, ideally a covered one, for all of the golf carts with a detailed inventory system. Have your team trained on how to make sure each cart is accounted for and stored properly at the end of each day.
Having Fun and Staying Safe
Keeping on top of all your safety requirements is much easier with a computerized maintenance management system (CMMS) like Dude Solutions. With a CMMS, you can schedule preventive maintenance, increase visibility into your work order management and provide more accountability for your staff. With more insights into your operations, you’ll be able to justify additional resources or purchasing requests, too. Your job is to keep your members safe while still offering a great experience – and it’s possible if you take a little extra time to do it.