Golf Carts & Low-Speed Vehicles
CITY CLERK & TAX DIVISION | GOLF CARTS & LOW-SPEED VEHICLES
Located on the 2nd Floor of City Hall, this office is open Monday through Friday, between the hours of 8 a.m. and 5 p.m.
City Clerk: Kermas Eaton
200 Forrest Street
Post Office Box 1898
Hattiesburg, MS 39403-1898
GOLF CART & LOW-SPEED VEHICLE REGULATIONS
In August 2022, the Hattiesburg City Council voted unanimously to establish Ordinance No. 3316 to allow for golf carts and low-speed vehicles on city streets, as set forth by state statute. Below are key details:
- Owners and operators must register their golf cart or low-speed vehicle with the City Clerk’s Office at 200 Forrest Street (2nd Floor).
- Drivers operating a golf cart or low-speed vehicle must have a valid driver’s license and proof of financial responsibility with them at all times, as required by state law.
- Vehicles must meet safety equipment requirements under 49 CFR Section 571.500 (headlamps, front and rear turn signal lamps, tail lamps, stop lamps, reflect reflectors, exterior mirror mounted on driver’s or passenger’s side, parking brake, VIN number or Serial Number, Type 1 or Type 2 seatbelts, proper windshield and an alert sound).
- Operation is limited to the outside lane of multi-lane streets and roads, where applicable.
- The Hattiesburg Police Department will enforce all traffic and road-based regulations listed in the ordinance, in addition to all traffic and road-based laws of the State of Mississippi and the City of Hattiesburg. Citations will be written for unauthorized operation of a golf cart or low-speed vehicle.
- Underage driving is not permitted and will be subject to a citation from the Hattiesburg Police Department for unlicensed driving. This is considered a misdemeanor, and a first offense could lead to a fine of up to $445.
WHERE CAN I DRIVE?
Registered golf carts and low-speed vehicles may only be operated on public roads and streets where there is an established speed limit of 30 miles per hour or less. Additionally, the operation of golf carts and low-speed vehicles is prohibited on MDOT highways and interstates.
Per Section 3.2 of Ordinance 3316, the Traffic Committee has established that the following roads and streets* are prohibited for golf cart or low-speed vehicle operation due to high traffic counts, recommendations by governing authorities, street design and other factors that impede public safety.
- Beverly Hills Dr
- Bouie St
- Broadway Dr
- Campbell Dr
- Campbell Lp
- E Hardy St
- Edwards St
- Golf Course Rd
- Hall Ave
- Hardy St
- King Rd
- Lincoln Rd
- N 38th Ave
- Oak Grove Rd
- Old Hwy 11
- Old Hwy 42
- Pinehills Dr
- S 28th Ave
- S 40th Ave
- Veterans Memorial Dr
- W 4th St
- W 7th St
- W Pine St (Hwy 49 – Hardy St)
- Westover Dr
The above prohibited streets and roads are in addition to any city streets and roads which have a speed limit greater than 30 mph and MDOT interstates or highways.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
1. Why is an ordinance necessary?
In 2021, the Mississippi Legislature passed Senate Bill 2605 giving municipalities the authority to pass ordinances for golf-cart and low-speed vehicles to match the needs of a community. As it currently stands, the operation of golf carts and low-speed vehicles is illegal within the city limits of Hattiesburg. The ordinance will not only make it legal but make provisions that prioritize public safety.
2. How much is registration?
3. If I already have a golf cart or low-speed vehicle, will I have to register it for legal use?
Yes. Per Ordinance No. 3316, legal use will require registration of the vehicle with the City Clerk’s office. All registered vehicles will be required to place a decal on the golf cart or low-speed vehicle proving registration.
4. Once registered, can I drive my golf cart on any city street?
No. Registered golf carts and low-speed vehicles should only be operated on public roads and streets in the city where there is an established speed limit of 30 miles per hour or less. The city’s Traffic Committee can also prohibit other roads based on traffic counts, recommendations by governing authorities, street design and other factors. See the full list of prohibited streets in addition to those that have a speed limit greater than 30 mph and MDOT interstates or highways.
5. Can I drive my golf cart or low-speed vehicle along a multi-use path if it’s on a prohibited street?
Multi-use paths are sidewalk areas that span a width greater than 8 feet. These are found along some city streets where golf carts and low-speed vehicles are prohibited due to traffic committee recommendations or speed limit restrictions. Golf cars and low-speed vehicles are permissible for these streets where multi-use paths exist, but only along the multi-use paths. It’s important to note that multi-use paths are used by a variety of residents, including pedestrians, cyclists and wheelchairs. Please be considerate of all users when driving a golf cart or low-speed vehicle on these paths.
6. Who will enforce the ordinance?
The Hattiesburg Police Department will enforce all traffic and road-based regulations listed in the ordinance. Citations will be written for the unauthorized operation of a golf cart or low-speed vehicle.
7. What if my golf cart is missing a few of the street legal requirements?
All golf carts and low-speed vehicles will be required to meet the operable safety standards before being registered.
8. Can an underage driver operate my registered golf cart or low-speed vehicle under my supervision or authority?
No. The ordinance regulates that all drivers operating a golf cart or low-speed vehicle must have a valid driver’s license and proof of financial responsibility as required by state law. Underage driving will not be permitted.
9. What happens if my underage driver is pulled over for operating our family’s golf cart or low-speed vehicle?
The Hattiesburg Police Department will issue a citation for unlicensed driving. This is considered a misdemeanor, and a first offense could lead to a fine of up to $445.
10. Can I drive my golf cart or low-speed vehicle on the Longleaf Trace or the campuses of Southern Miss or William Carey?
Drivers shall abide by all additional regulations when operating a golf cart or low-speed vehicle in areas subject to additional governing policies, which may include registration with the governing entity. These areas may include university and college campuses and public trails including the Longleaf Trace.
Permits for driving on the Longleaf Trace are also required, even when inside the city limits. For reference, the Longleaf Trace begins at Main Street and extends west to the city limit boundary. East of Main Street is a city-owned pathway. For details about how to obtain your permit ($15), visit https://www.longleaftrace.org/rules-etiquette.
11. Can I drive on a prohibited road to get to an allowed road?
Registered Golf Carts or Low-Speed Vehicles may cross those streets that are not authorized for travel, but the shortest traveling distance to do so shall be required. Crossing these streets is allowed only at an established traffic signal crossing or designated stop sign.