"I recently had an elderly lady drive right up close behind me, revving her engine loudly," East Budleigh horse rider urges motorists to slow down
PUBLISHED: 17:00 12 August 2018
A horse rider from East Budleigh is highlighting the dangers of riding on the road when vehicles pass too close or fast.
Katie Lee, aged 43, has teamed up with the British Horse Society’s (BHS) Dead? Or Dead Slow? campaign, shining the spotlight on the number of horse accidents and deaths from vehicles on the road.
Katie, and her black mare, Ebony, has personal experience of inconsiderate motorists driving too fast or close to her horse.
She hopes, by joining forces with the BHS charity, to educate motorists how to be considerate to horses and riders as vulnerable road users, and pass by slowly.
Katie, who rides out on the road several times a week with Ebony, said vehicles pass by too close or fast on nearly every ride.
Katie and Ebony always wear hi-viz clothing, complete with flashing LED lights for maximum driver visibility when they ride on the road.
Katie believes many drivers don’t understand how horses can be scared by fast-moving or close vehicles.
Katie said: “I recently had an elderly lady drive right up close behind me, revving her engine loudly.
“I’m sure she wasn’t trying to scare Ebony – she just didn’t know what to do in order to safely overtake.”
In a bid to promote the horse charity’s safety campaign, Katie recently appeared with her horse on local television news, to share her experiences of riding on the roads and lack of driver awareness.
A spokesperson for the BHS said: “Katie contacted the BHS to support the dead slow campaign as she wanted to help educate drivers about what they should do when they see a horse on the road.
“Katie and Ebony appeared with the BHS in an ITV South West news feature highlighting the issue, which has been seen by over four million people throughout July, as several other ITV regions also featured Katie’s story.”
This summer, the BHS launched a virtual reality film to educate drivers on safely passing a horse on the road by giving them the opportunity to experience the roads from a rider’s perspective.
The British Horse Society recommends drivers slow down to a maximum of 15mph, are patient, don’t sound the horn or rev engines, pass horses wide and slow and drive slowly away.
Watch the new 360 virtual reality film on the Journal website.