Hamo ditches six-seaters
HAMILTON Island has stopped using six-seater petrol buggies, following a crash that left a woman and her baby in a critical state and five others injured.
Hamilton Island Enterprises chief executive officer Glenn Bourke said he made the decision to cease use of the six-seater buggies the same afternoon as the accident occurred in March.
“I made a decision to try and change the practices here,” he said.
Mr Bourke said about 600 two- and four-seater buggies remained on the island.
He said about 90% of those were the safer model of electric buggies, which can drive a maximum of 20km/h.
“I feel like a buggy is still the safest kind of vehicle that we could have around Hamilton Island,” he said.
“We’ve had quite a terrible accident, but if we had normal vehicles here, I’m sure we’d have more accidents than we currently have.”
Mr Bourke said the Department of Transport and Main Roads had recently renewed a licence that allowed people to drive buggies on the islands’ roads.
A spokesman said the department had not recommended the island stop using golf buggies.
“We support the use of golf buggies on the island, provided they meet the requirements of the conditional registration scheme, and follow the Queensland road rules, as roads on Hamilton Island are public roads,” the spokesman said.
In Queensland, buggies may only be registered for limited operations on roads or road related areas, including Hamilton Island, under the Conditional Registration Scheme.
Golf buggies operating on road or road related areas must comply with the Queensland Road Rules and drivers must be licensed.