“Promoting safety for horses & riders on UK roads”
©2014 Horses & Road Safety Awareness
If   you   do   not   drive   at   all   or   are   too   young   to   drive,   your   ability   to   judge   speed,   time   and   distance   may   not   be   as   good   as   people   who   do   drive.   You   may   well   feel   that   you   have time   to   take   that      right   turn   before   that   car   behind   you   catches   up   or   feel   that   you   have   plenty   of   time   to   reach   the   gateway   to   allow   a   car   to   pass,   it   might   not   be   the   case   and you   end   up   with   an   irate   and   abusive   driver.   These   situations   can   be   really   scary   and   can   be   avoided   with   the   correct   riding   and   road   safety   training.   You   are   given   training   in   a school and on road and sit a theory test as well as practical exam, again on road and in a school.  It is thorough and well worth every minute. You   should   already   know   that   horse   riders   must   ride   on   the   left   hand   side   of   the   road   but   did   you   know   your   horse   can   legally   take   up   the   same   space   as   a   car ?   This doesn’t   mean   you   should   ride   as   close   to   the   centre   white   line   as   you   can   but   you   do   not   have   to   stick   so   close   to   the   trees,   hawthorns   and   brambles   that   rip   holes   in   your jodhpurs   and   shred   your   skin!   Give   yourself   some   room,   create   your   safe   bubble   with   a   HV   taped   dressage   whip   or   crop,   if   you   have   space   you   have   more   chance   of   gaining control   over   your   horse   should   he   spook   or   get   scared   by   traffic.   Riding   in   your   rightful   space   also   forces   cars   to   slow   down   and   check   the   oncoming   traffic   in   order   to   overtake safely.
Turning   right,   you   must   stay   left   until   you   reach   the   shortest   route   to   your   right   turn   at   ‘B’.      Check   the way is clear both ways before turning right.
Roundabouts   - Again,   you   must   stick   to   the   left   and   only   signal   left   when   you   are   approaching   the   exit you   wish   to   take.   When   passing   exits   you   are   not   taking ,   signal   right   (this   action   tells   other   road users you are not taking that exit).
Hand   signals   are   a   vital   part   of   road   safety;   they   alone   can   tell   approaching   traffic   of   your   intentions   or   to   tell   them   to   take   an   action that will avoid incidents. Before making any signals ensure that you look around to see whether it safe to begin.
Turning Right – Hold your reins in your left hand and hold your right arm out straight
Turning Left – Hold your reins in your right hand and hold your left arm out straight.
To   Stop    –   Hold   the   reins   in   your   left   hand   and   hold   your   right   arm   behind   you   with your   fingers   and   palm   facing   the   traffic.      It   is   advised   by   the   BHS   not   to   wave   a   driver on after you have asked them to stop, to avoid liability if they have an accident.
Slow   Down    –   Hold   the   reins   in   your   left   hand   and   hold   your   right   arm   out   with   palm facing   downwards   and   move   you   arm   slowly   up   and   down.   It   is   advised   by   the   BHS not   to   wave   a   driver   on   after   you   have   asked   them   to   slow,   to   avoid   liability   if   they have an accident.  
Two Abreast
The   Highway   Code   advises   that   young   riders   and   riders   of   young   or   inexperienced horses   ride   on   the   inside   of   a   steady   and   calm   horse   and   rider.   It   is   perfectly   legal to   ride   two   abreast   but   riders   are   expected   to   return   to   single   file   on   narrow   and/or busy roads and on bends.
Clothing and equipment
Children   under   the   age   of   14   MUST   wear   a   helmet   which   complies   with   BS   Standards.   It   MUST   be   fastened   securely.   Other   riders   should   also   follow   these   requirements. These requirements do not apply to a child who is a follower of the Sikh religion while wearing a turban. All riders should wear;                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 
The Basics
It may be obvious but it is surprising how many riders do not take safety seriously and ride without due care and attention to other road users.  Before taking your horse out on the road you must take steps to ensure the horse does not pose a high risk. Good ground training to desensitise your horse to potential hazards it may come across whilst out on a hack is essential. Many people become comfortable with their horse and forget that it can still spook. If you were riding in a lesson, your teacher would correct you, out on the road you are alone and need to correct yourself. Always put both a bridle and saddle on your horse, wear a hat, hi viz, good riding boots, keep your feet in your stirrups and keep your hands on the reins except when signalling. Never use your mobile phone whilst in the saddle, this device should be for emergencies only and ensure you have an ICE contact (in case of emergency) number easily accessible should an incident occur. If safe to take a hand off the reins, say thank you by waving, nodding or smiling. This should be an automatic reaction! Only ride when conditions are suitable. If you have trouble walking on the ice or snow then your horse will too. You are responsible for the safety of your horse. If you care for it, you’ll protect it.
And Finally
1 Remember that there are more than 4.2 million riders in Britain and 26 million licensed vehicles on the roads. Every day there are more than 8 horse related traffic accidents – if you don’t wish to be one of this 8, take your Riding and Road Safety Test. To find out where you can take your test, please go to http://www.bhs.org.uk/Training_and_Qualifications/Riding_and_Road_Safety.aspx  or The British Horse Society Examinations Department on 020476 840482 or email enquiry@bhs.org.uk 
Useful Contacts
To join the group - https://www.facebook.com/groups/horsesafetyawareness  Or email us at info@hrsa.org.uk http://www.bhs.org.uk/safety-and-accidents/report-an-incident http://www.bhs.org.uk  Useful Notes For non emergency road traffic incidents, including abusive verbal attacks and non contact incidents please call the non emergency police number 101 and report. Always try to remember a company name on commercial vehicles or a registration number, report the incident to the company, most will discipline careless driving.
1 . Boots or shoes with hard soles and heels 2 . Light-coloured or fluorescent clothing in daylight 3 . Reflective clothing if you have to ride at night or in bad light/poor visibility
General hacking
Support Us
Safety Advice
Legal Advice