Kentucky Golf Cart & Low Speed Vehicle Laws

Last updated on February 18th, 2017

This is an in-depth guide to Kentucky Golf Cart & Low-Speed Vehicle Laws. We’ve created this guide to help you, the consumer, in determining Kentucky’s laws.

Is this state Medium Speed Vehicle friendly? Yes. The Medium Speed Vehicle must be registered and insured as a motor vehicle in accordance with KRS 186.050(3)(a).

Is License and Registration a Requirement? For LSVs, yes. For Golf Carts no, but a permit and inspection is required as well as insurance.

General Federal Law for Golf Carts:

Under current NHTSA interpretations and regulations, so long as golf cars and other similar vehicles are incapable of exceeding 20 miles per hour, they are subject to only state and local requirements regarding safety equipment. However, if these vehicles are originally manufactured so that they can go faster than 20 miles per hour, they are treated as motor vehicles under Federal law.

The standard requires low-speed vehicles to be equipped with headlamps, stop lamps, turn signal lamps, taillamps, reflex reflectors, parking brakes, rearview mirrors, windshields, seat belts, and vehicle identification numbers.

For more information on the federal laws pertaining to golf carts, please click here.

 

Kentucky Golf Cart & Low Speed Vehicle Laws

Guidelines for Golf Carts and PTVs (Personal Transportation Vehicles)

Local government may permit operation of golf carts on public roadways so please check with your local municipality in regards to what laws they’ve put forth. This is a general overview for the state of Kentucky.

In Kentucky, a Golf Cart means any self-propelled vehicle that:

  • Is designed for the transportation of players or maintaining equipment on a golf course, while engaged in the playing of golf, supervising the play of golf, or maintaining the condition of the grounds on a golf course
  • Has a minimum of four (4) wheels
  • Is designed to operate at a speed of not more than thirty-five (35) miles per hour
  • Is designed to carry not more than six (6) persons, including the driver
  • Has a maximum gross vehicle weight of two thousand five hundred (2,500) pounds
  • Has a maximum rated payload capacity of one thousand two hundred (1,200) pounds
  • Meets the federal motor vehicle safety standards for low-speed vehicles set forth in 49 C.F.R. sec. 571.500

In order to legally operate your golf cart on public roadways, you must obtain a permit from your local government and display it appropriately. You must also get your golf cart inspected by a certified inspector designated by the county sheriff and certified through the Department of Vehicle Regulation to ensure that the golf cart complies with the requirements of state laws.

A permitted golf cart may be operated on streets for which the posted speed limit is 35 MPH or less.

The driver of the golf cart must hold a valid driver’s license and may only operate the golf cart between sunrise and sunset.

Your Golf Cart DOES NOT need the following:

  • Title requirements
  • Vehicle registration requirements
  • Emissions compliance certificates

Guidelines for LSV (Low Speed Vehicle)

  • Reaches speeds of 20 MPH to 25 MPH.
  • Has a vehicle identification number (VIN)
  • Headlamps
  • Front and rear turn signals
  • Taillamps
  • Stop lamps
  • Reflex reflectors, red – one on each side and one on the rear
  • Exterior mirror on the driver side and an interior mirror or exterior mirror on passenger side
  • Parking brake
  • Windshield
  • Seatbelt for each designated seat
  • Not be operated on any roadway with a speed limit above 35 mph.

Any person operating a low-speed vehicle (LSV) must have in their possession a valid driver license. An LSV must also be registered and insured with Personal Injury Protection and Property Damage Liability.

 

HELPFUL LINKS

www.lrc.ky.gov – Golf Carts
www.lrc.ky.gov – Low Speed Vehicles
www.one.nhtsa.gov

Disclaimer
Although each of these state guides gives a thorough approach to the golf cart laws in your state, it is recommended that you perform the research on your own and reach out to your local municipality.

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