Think horse and rider

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GEM Motoring Assist is adding its voice to the recently-launched equestrian road safety campaign by urging drivers to ‘think horse and rider’ on journeys.

The plea follows the news that 36 riders were killed in road incidents in the past five years.

We support the the British Horse Society’s Dead Slow campaign, which asks drivers to stay below 15mph when they meet a horse and rider on the road. 

Horses are live animals and can be unpredictable, despite the best efforts of the most experienced rider.Many people may not know how to pass a horse on the road. There are some excellent resources available, including the new BHS video and GEM’s own safety leaflet.

Both of these offer simple tips that can boost driver confidence and lead to a safer road environment for drivers, horses and riders.

Sadly there are too many selfish drivers unwilling to slow down or create some safety space for the horse and rider.

We urge them to reflect for a few moments on the risks they pose – to themselves and to others.

Give horses as much room as the road allows.Bear in mind horses and riders may be aware of hazards you haven’t seen or heard. Look out for a rider’s signals, especially if you are being asked to slow down or stop.

Don’t accelerate as you go past a horse, or immediately after you have passed it.

Riders, make sure you and your horse can be seen easily.

Fluorescent leg wraps for the horse are particularly effective.

Ride in single file when traffic needs to pass, thus ensuring there is plenty of space as cars go past.

A ‘thank you’ to a driver for an act of courtesy goes a long way to ensuring that the next horse and rider they meet will get the same treatment.

Our safety leaflet, produced with the assistance of the British Horse Society, is available free online, or ring 01342 825676.

David Williams,

Chief Executive,

GEM Motoring Assist.