TECHNICAL ADVISORY

DIVISION OF MOTOR VEHICLES

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To:  Tax Collectors and License Plate Agents

From:  Carl A. Ford, Director

Subject:  Golf Carts, Low-Speed Vehicles and Golf Carts Converted to Low-speed Vehicles

Advisory Date:  12/02/05                               Implementation Date:

Advisory Number:  T05-14

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This advisory is to address the Florida Statutes and information concerning low-speed vehicles and golf carts.

 

GOLF CARTS

Section 316.212, Florida Statutes, provides that the operation of a golf cart upon the public roads or streets of this state is prohibited except for specific reasons as provided in this section.

Section 320.105, Florida Statutes, provides that golf carts and utility vehicles, as defined in s. 320.01, when operated in accordance with s. 316.212 or s. 316.2126, are exempt from registration or display of a license plate.

Section 316.2126, Florida Statutes, states:  In addition to the powers granted by ss. 316.212 and 316.2125, municipalities are hereby authorized to utilize golf carts and utility vehicles, as defined in s. 320.01, upon any state, county, or municipal roads located within the corporate limits of such municipalities, subject to the following conditions:

(1)        Golf carts and utility vehicles must comply with the operational and safety requirements in ss. 316.212 and 316.2125, and any other restrictive ordinances enacted by the local governmental entity pursuant to s. 316.212(7), and shall only be operated by municipal employees for municipal purposes, including, but not limited to, police patrol, traffic enforcement, and inspection of public facilities.

(2)        In addition to the safety equipment required in s. 316.212(5) and any other restrictive safety equipment required by the local governmental entity pursuant to s. 316.212(7), such golf carts and utility vehicles must be equipped with sufficient lighting and turn signal equipment.

(3)        Golf carts and utility vehicles may only be operated on state roads that have posted speed limit of 30 miles per hour or less.

(4)        A municipal employee operating a golf cart or utility vehicle pursuant to this section must possess a valid driver's license as required by s. 322.03.

Section 320.01(22), Florida Statutes, defines "Golf cart" as a motor vehicle that is designed and manufactured for operation on a golf course for sporting or recreational purposes and that is not capable of exceeding speeds of 20 miles per hour.

 

Golf carts are not allowed to be titled or registered.

 

LOW-SPEED VEHICLES

Section 316.2122, Florida Statutes, provides that the operation of a low-speed vehicle, as defined in s. 320.01(42), on any road as defined in s. 334.03(15) or (33), is authorized with the following restrictions:

(1)        A low-speed vehicle may be operated only on streets where the posted speed limit is 35 miles per hour or less. This does not prohibit a low-speed vehicle from crossing a road or street at an intersection where the road or street has a posted speed limit of more than 35 miles per hour.

(2)        A low-speed vehicle must be equipped with headlamps, stop lamps, turn signal lamps, taillamps, reflex reflectors, parking brakes, rearview mirrors, windshields, seat belts, and vehicle identification numbers.

                        (3)        A low-speed vehicle must be registered and insured in accordance with s. 320.02.

                        (4)        Any person operating a low-speed vehicle must have in his or her possession a valid driver's license.

(5)        A county or municipality may prohibit the operation of low-speed vehicles on any road under its jurisdiction if the governing body of the county or municipality determines that such prohibition is necessary in the interest of safety.

(6)        The Department of Transportation may prohibit the operation of low-speed vehicles on any road under its jurisdiction if it determines that such prohibition is necessary in the interest of safety.

 

Section 320.01 (42), Florida Statutes, defines "Low-speed vehicle" as any four-wheeled electric vehicle whose top speed is greater than 20 miles per hour but not greater than 25 miles per hour, including neighborhood electric vehicles.  Low-speed vehicles must comply with the safety standards in 49 C.F.R. s. 571.500 and s. 316.2122.  Any retailer who sells low-speed vehicles must have a dealer's license.

 

NOTE:  The U. S. Department of Transportation National Safety Administration (NHTSA) added a new ruling on July 1, 2005, which states that all low-speed vehicles must weigh less than 2,500 pounds.

 

FRVIS currently has only two options for the body type of an LSV (2P or 4P).  However, we have received telephone calls from several counties stating they are receiving MCO's showing "6 passengers" and also some with "9 passengers." Therefore, if you receive one of these MCO's, use the body type of 4P until programming has been completed to add 6P & 9P as an additional body type.

 

DMV Procedure TL-63, Low-speed vehicles, has been created to address requirements and information concerning low-speed vehicles.  The procedure is located at:

 

http://www3.hsmv.state.fl.us/Intranet/dmv/Manuals/DMVProcedures/BTR/tl/TL-63.pdf

 

GOLF CARTS CONVERTED TO LOW-SPEED VEHICLES

 

NHTSA allows for a golf cart to be converted to a low-speed vehicle.  Once the vehicle has been converted, the customer must submit the following to a DMV Regional Office:

 

Proof of ownership for the golf cart (MCO or bill of sale)

                        A statement of builder (form HSMV 84490)

                        The original bills of sale for all parts (used to convert the golf cart)

                        An application for title (form HSMV 82040)

 

The compliance examiner will review the paperwork and inspect the vehicle.  If the vehicle passes inspection and the documentation is in order, an FLA number will be assigned to the vehicle and the paper work will be processed.

 

If you have any questions or need further assistance, please contact your Tax Collector Help Desk.

CAF/gra