There are millions of horse riders in Great Britain, many of whom ride on the road. Horse riders have a right to use the road, and both riders and motorists are responsible for each other’s safety. Horses are powerful animals that are easily frightened and can panic, especially near fast-moving traffic or at sudden loud noises.

Before taking a horse onto the road, riders should ensure that they can control the horse, and that the saddle and other equipment fit well and is in good condition. Horses that are inexperienced in riding on the road, or are nervous of traffic, should be ridden by experienced riders and be accompanied by other, less nervous horses.

Riders should follow the Highway Code and obey all road signs, road markings and traffic lights to lower the risk of accidents. Riding two abreast can be useful, especially if one of the riders or horses is inexperienced, but riders should return to single file where the road narrows and when approaching bends.

Riders should not carry passengers, or anything which might affect their balance or become tangled in the reins. They should keep both hands on the reins, except when signaling, and both feet in the stirrups. Where possible, riders should avoid busy, high speed roads and difficult junctions, such as roundabouts.

Article source: ROSPA — The royal society for the prevention of accidents

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