Along with the gradual relaxation of COVID-19 restrictions, the improving weather and lighter evenings will no doubt be inspiring many of us to get out and enjoy the picturesque rural scenery that Wales has to offer.
As well as pedestrians, cyclists and motorcyclists, horse riders are vulnerable road users but they can sometimes be overlooked as they don’t feature as highly in road casualties statistics.
Horses and their riders can be vulnerable on the road; a collision involving a horse and a vehicle can have life threatening consequences for the horse, the rider as well as the vehicle user.
The British Horse Society (BHS) has launched the Ride Safe Award, a new qualification designed to help the UK's 1.3 million horse riders feel safer and more confident when riding out on the road.
Described as the equivalent to cycling's Bikeability scheme, the Ride Safe Award is endorsed by the DfT's THINK! campaign.
To launch the award, sports broadcaster Lizzie Greenwood-Hughes and 18-year-old international dressage champion, Phoebe Peters took part in a Ride Safe demonstration to show the importance of being confident when riding out.
As the summer holidays are approaching, the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) is urging drivers to make sure their trailers, caravans and horseboxes are safe and legal.
The DVSA #TowSafe4Freddie campaign was launched in November last year and has been calling on drivers using a trailer to perform basic safety checks following the tragic death of 3-year-old Freddie Hussey.
Freddie was walking with his mother in Bedminster, Bristol, when a two-tonne trailer became detached from a Land Rover. The trailer mounted the kerb before hitting Freddie.
Please help to make transport by road safer for equines and their human handlers.
Nottingham Trent University (NTU), the British Animal Rescue and Trauma Care Association (BARTA) and the British Horse Society (BHS) are working together to identify ways in which horse transport can be made safer. We believe that the experience of owners, riders and trainers can provide invaluable information.
The survey includes questions about your experience of transporting equines - whether they are transported for you or by you – and what measures should be taken to reduce the risks associated with transporting equines by road. The responses to the survey will be analysed and the key factors associated with best practice identified.
An event rider from the Newcastle Emlyn area is urging drivers to slow down and take care when they drive on rural roads, following an accident only five minutes from her home between the villages of Rhydlewis and Brongest last week.
It was originally thought that Sophie Spiteri had suffered a clot on the lung following her fall on the tarmac, but she came away with only minor injuries.
A knowledgeable horse woman, Sophie can be seen riding her retired race horses and youngsters daily around the country lanes of Brongest, the village where she lives. On her usual daily morning hack on her five-year-old thoroughbred gelding Gulliver, she was met by a white van, and Sophie says the driver made no attempt to stop.
The first European Day Without A Road Death is taking place across Europe on Wednesday 21 September. Devised as Project EDWARD by the European Traffic Police Network (TISPOL), the initiative seeks to draw attention to the average of 70 deaths occurring every day on the roads of Europe.
UK support for Project EDWARD comes from the National Police Chiefs’ Council (NPCC), the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA), Road Safety GB, Road Safety Scotland, Road Safety Wales, the Automobile Association and many public and private organisations.
TISPOL believes it’s vital to gain the support of national governments, as well as winning the hearts and minds of individual road users, in order to bring about sustained and significant reductions in death and injury on Europe’s roads.