New Madrid police proactive in alternative vehicle safety - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

New Madrid police proactive in alternative vehicle safety

NEW MADRID, MO (KFVS) -

Residents of New Madrid take advantage of using ATVs, UTVs and golf carts for their daily commuting.

It's not uncommon to turn a corner and see one of these vehicles at any given time. One resident said people of this city love using these ATVs and golf carts, and she sees them everywhere all the time.

Overall, this isn't an issue with people driving around. However, New Madrid Police Chief Joey Higgerson said they have received a couple of calls from residents voicing their concern that someone may get in a wreck and get hurt.

Higgerson said their police department is stepping up patrols and looking out for these alternative vehicles in light of concerned residents.

He said not all drivers are obeying the law and want to make sure the public is aware of what rules and ordinances are in place for these vehicles.

Police are being proactive to make sure people are aware and safe when driving these vehicles. Higgerson felt that it's better to step up patrols and make sure everyone is safe and informed before a wreck were to happen. 

Residents we spoke to say it's great they can use these vehicles to commute around town. They also say it's cheaper on gas and easier to commute to places that aren't very far away in the city.

However, some say there are kids that don't look old enough to legally drive these vehicles, and are concerned that they may get hurt driving through town. 

Higgerson said if his department sees anyone not old enough to be able to drive, they will send them home immediately and inform them of the rules of the road.

"It's about informing residents to be safe and safety is our priority," said Higgerson.

The ordinance states that a person must be legally able to drive, have a legal permit for the vehicle, and all traffic laws apply to these vehicles as well.

There is additional requirements such as you cannot use these vehicles on a highway and can only use them on city streets with the speed limit 30 mph or less with the exception of Scott Street.

Vehicles require a slow-moving emblem, lights on after dark, seats required and other regulations and limitations.

For more information on this ordinance, you can contact city officials for a full list of rules and regulations.

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