Electric golf carts use rechargeable batteries that power electric motors to move them. Typically, the owner plugs a charger into a wall outlet at home. However, HowStuffWorks.com reports electric golf carts fitted with solar panels on their roof to help maintain the battery's charge are available.
Manufacturers design electric golf carts for operation at speeds below 15 miles per hour. They normally use a 4x8-foot footprint and are approximately 6 feet tall. Most manufacturers design carts to carry two players and golf bags across the course, according to Reference.com. Manufacturers choose battery combinations to allow the cart to complete an 18-hole course with power to spare.
Electric golf carts began the movement toward commercially available electric vehicles for consumer use. They are quiet when operating and produce no emissions. Their relatively slow speeds make them safe for pedestrians. While their initial use for the golf course began as early as 1951, neighborhood electric vehicles are growing in popularity. Some NEVs look like a golf cart, while other manufacturers are offering a more traditional and weatherproof, automobile-like body.
Operators of electric golf carts are responsible for their safe use. On the golf course, these vehicles are the primary cause of injury. Use of common sense and knowing the limitations of the vehicle helps to improve their safety.