The St. Johns County Commission approved a second reading of a golf cart ordinance Tuesday — requiring anyone 18-years or younger to possess a valid learners or driver’s license in order to operate one. This matches a state law that passed last year.
The previous law only required that a golf cart driver be 14-years-old to drive on public roads. But, after a number of recent golf cart accidents involving young teens, the new law was passed and signed by the governor.
In 2021, a 15-year-old in St. Johns County nearly lost his life driving a golf cart. Conner Gooding was rushed to the hospital after he fell and hit his head on the asphalt. His injury required three steel plates in his skull, but he suffered no permanent brain damage.
In 2019, a firework ignited inside a golf cart in St. Johns County, causing a teenager to fall out of a golf cart and suffer a head injury. A total of six teenage boys were in the golf cart at the time of the accident.
State House Bill 949 was signed by Gov. DeSantis and went into effect Oct. 1, 2023. In Florida, you must be at least 15-years-old to get a driving permit and have parental consent.