PETEY the horse is the star of a new road safety video launched by Warwickshire Police.
The video, which has been created by Warwickshire Road Safety partners to raise awareness of how drivers, cyclists and bikers should safely pass a horse and rider on the roads, sees the gelding in the starring role.
Warwickshire Horse Watch, The British Horse Society, Project Edward and Warwickshire Police have all been involved in the making of the video which is available on YouTube.
Last year nationally 66 horses were killed, and 126 riders were injured and the film highlights how passing horses wide and slow on the roads can significantly reduce these numbers.
And The Highway Code is now specific about what drivers need to do to safely pass horses:
– Slow down to a maximum of 10mph
– Be patient, and do not sound a horn or rev the engine
– When safe to do so, pass the horse wide and slow (two metres minimum if possible)
– Drive slowly away
For motorcyclists, as soon as you spot a horse ahead:
– Slow down to 10mph and be prepared to stop
– Don’t rev your engine or sound your horn
– Pass the horse wide and slow if safe to do so
– Ride slowly away
Cyclists passing a horse are asked to be nice and say hi:
– Alert the horse rider you are there by calling out in advance, so the horse and rider have time to react
– Don’t get too close and never pass on the inside of a horse
– Slow down to a max of 10mph and stop if asked to do so
– Pass wide and slow
Alan Hiscox, Director of Safety at The British Horse Society, said: “Eighty per cent of incidents reported to us are because of vehicles passing horses either too close or too fast so we are asking drivers, motorcyclists and cyclists to do the right thing and slow down for these vulnerable sensitive road users.
“We know that road safety incidents involving horses are under reported to both us and our road safety partners. We are asking the public to please download the Horse i app from the BHS website and use it to report incidents to us to provide a true picture of what is happening on our roads.
“It’s not just about drivers however. We also look at horse and rider behaviours too and offer the Ride Safe Award scheme to provide a foundation for any horse rider to be safe, particularly on the road.”
While Warwickshire Police Chief Constable Debbie Tedds said: “We are working as part of Warwickshire Road Safety Partnership to deliver a number of road safety initiatives to help improve road safety for our more vulnerable road users.
“For horse riders, we are planning Operation Close Pass so that officers can observe how drivers pass a horse and rider on the roads in a ‘real life’ scenario. Whilst good drivers pass horses wide and slow, we will be talking to those drivers that pass too close or too fast to ensure next time they pass safely.
“We are also encouraging horse riders and carriage drivers to submit any headcam footage of careless or dangerous driving they may have captured to Warwickshire Police via Operation Snap. The evidence will be reviewed by one of our road traffic police officers and you will be updated on the result. “
The video can be viewed at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HzDx7dnakjE