Sharing With Horses
Is it possible to write an article regarding the dangers of vehicles and horses on our roads? As a horse owner, it can be very scary out there. Please impress upon the public that driving at high speeds, passing and approaching horses on the roads could be an accident waiting to happen.
This reader goes on to give good advice based on her experience with horses: please, slow down, do not honk, and give a wide berth when passing horses. Most horses are road safe, but any animal may become unpredictable in an instant.
In British Columbia, the rider or driver of an animal drawn vehicle has the same rights and duties as the driver of any type of motor vehicle. This means that they must be ridden or driven on the right, must obey traffic control signs and signals and that riders and drivers must have reasonable consideration for each other while they are using the highway.
Both the Minister of Transportation and the government of a municipality may make regulations or bylaws that control the riding of horses or the operation of horse drawn vehicles on or beside our highways. In fact, horses and horse drawn vehicles are prohibited on freeways and may only cross at intersections by permit from the Minister of Transportation. Also, animal drawn vehicles must display a slow moving vehicle sign at the rear when on a highway.
Drivers of vehicles should be aware that if in passing by a horse being ridden or driven and they indirectly cause an accident, which could include spooking the animal which then throws the rider off, they are bound to stop, render assistance and provide their details to the rider. Failing to do so could result in charges of failing to remain at an accident.
- Duty of Driver at Accident - Section 68 MVA
- Rider and Animal Driven Vehicle Rights and Duties - Section 120(c) MVA
- Regulation of Animal Traffic in Municipalities - Section 124(b) MVA
- Driving Without Reasonable Consideration for Others - Section 144(1)(c) MVA
- Prohibition of Animal Traffic on a Highway - Section 209(o) MVA
- Slow Moving Vehicles - Division 7B MVAR
- Schedule 1 Highway Restrictions - Division 19.07 MVAR
- For Drivers - Horse Council of BC