IAM RoadSmart is urging drivers to be careful around horse riders this summer, with statistics showing nearly 75% of incidents occur due to vehicles passing too closely.
Statistics published by the British Horse Society (BHS) earlier this year show that in the 12 months ending 28 February 2019, 87 horses and four people were killed on UK roads.
In total, 845 incidents involving horses on the road were reported to the BHS over this period – a year-on-year rise of 109%. Of those, 73% occurred due to vehicles passing by too closely.
With a spike in horse riders on country roads during the summer months, IAM RoadSmart has published a series of tips on how to best pass a horse.
When approaching from behind, drivers are encouraged to:
- Slow down and hold back
- Avoid any sudden movements and loud noise
- Remember horse riders could be around any corner
- Give plenty of space
- Keep an eye on the rider
- Accelerate gently
From head on, the advice is to:
- Slow down completely
- Consider putting on hazard warning lights
- Stop to allow the horse to pass if it is safe to do so
Jaimi McIlravey, horse rider and IAM RoadSmart’s digital content executive, said: “From personal experience, it’s not always a car that will spook a horse.
“You may be driving safely with enough gap between yourself and a horse and rider, however, something else may scare them, so be sure to stay alert.”