Monday, May 2, 2016

Ask Linda #1296-Remove loose impediments on green while ball off green

Linda, if my ball lies OFF the green on the fringe or rough, can I move twigs on my putt line, even though I’m not on the green? 
Lou from the UK

Dear Lou,

Yes. The only time you are not permitted to remove loose impediments is when both the ball and the loose impediments are in the same hazard [Rule 23-1].

There is an exception to this Rule. If you are searching for your ball in a hazard, and you suspect your ball is hidden under loose impediments, you may move the loose impediments to find your ball. If you find it, you must replace the loose impediments; you are allowed to leave a small part of the ball visible when you re-cover it. If you move the ball while removing the loose impediments, you incur a one-stroke penalty and must replace it. If you move the ball while replacing the loose impediments, there is no penalty and, again, the ball must be replaced [Rule 12-1b].

Please remember that the term “hazard” refers to both bunkers and water hazards [Definition of “Hazard”].

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