From The Blog

Low Speed Vehicle Study Underway

At the last few KICA board meetings, several community members have expressed concerns about low speed electric vehicles. The KICA Board of Directors has considered these concerns and taken action in limiting and studying the effects of LSVs on community roadways.

What is a LSV?
Low speed electric vehicles (LSVs) look like golf carts, but exceed golf cart speeds, and are therefore treated like an automobile. They must be registered with the DMV, riders must wear seatbelts and drivers are required to abide by all traffic laws, making them subject to citations by police. LSVs are required bylaw to attain a speed of20-25 mph within a mile and they are only permitted on roads having speed limits of 35 mph or less. They are not permitted on leisure trails or golf paths.

Low speed electric vehicles are not restricted on Kiawah. Members may own them (if they are registered and have a decal) and they are currently available to rent.

What are the issues with LSVs that members have presented?
The issues property owners have cited are that LSVs can hold up traffic and that rules aren’t always followed, raising safety concerns. Attention has been primarily focused on LSV renters, who may have less familiarity with the laws and rules.

How does KICA’s board plan to address the LSV issues?
Since the issues presented primarily lie with renters, the board contacted the LSV rental company, Lightning Bugz Rentals, who developed a pilot program which will allow KICA to limit the number of rental LSVs on the island and monitor their use. Beginning in Maya maximum of 12 rented LSVs will be permitted on Kiawah. All LSVs will be equipped with a GPS to track their use and location, which will be monitored by KICA Security.

To educate renters about the rules, Lightning Bugz Rentals requires sign-off on the rules at registration, again at pick-up and the rules are posted within each LSV.

This pilot program is anticipated to run through the end of the year, after which the board will evaluate the impact of LSVs.

A call for members to act.
If you see a driver in a Lightning Bugz LSV breaking the rules, contact [email protected] or 843-768-5566 to report the violation, so that the board will have an understanding of LSVs’ effect on community life.