More cities allowing golf carts to share the road

With the four-state average price of gas hovering around $2.45 a gallon, many cities in our area are looking at creative ways to help you save a buck.

Benton, Illinois, could join communities across our area in allowing golf carts to legally drive on city streets. I talked with some folks there to get their take on it. 

"I'd love to have one,” Carolyn Smith said.

"I think it's a great way to travel around small areas,” Paula Day said. “I don't think I would want to go to Carbondale on one."

"I think it's good,” Roy Smith said. “It saves on fuel, it's easy to get around and I haven't seen any problems."

Du Quoin Mayor Guy Alongi is one of 80 people in town with a golf cart permit.

Alongi says his family rides their golf cart around town five nights a week.

"It gives you an up close, personal feel of the neighborhood that you're driving in,” Alongi said. “You get to stop and see people. It gives you a different perspective of Du Quoin."

Every golf cart must have seat belts and headlights. 

As long as you're over the age of 16, $35 can get you out on the road.

"People think that there is a safety issue with them, but my response is that they are no more dangerous than a moped,” Alongi said.  “We can't go over 35 miles per hour, so we're not going to get in much trouble."

Alongi says most people buy golf carts to save money, but customizing a road-ready cart can cost more than $1,000, which he says is well worth it.

In Illinois, Kentucky and Tennessee it’s up to individual communities to decide if they want golf carts on their city streets with speed limits under 35 miles per hour.

The speed limit increases up to 45 miles per hour on Missouri roads.

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