How do you feel hacking on a main road? From experience, the roads are getting busier and busier and some motorists do not seem to understand how to drive safely (or in a few cases considerately) when near horses. 

In England and Wales the Highway Code gives guidance on how various road users should safely use highways and byways. Often there is an urban myth that people think that horses should have a right of way but unfortunately, it doesn't say that a horse has priority or right of way.

Ultimately all road users have a duty of care to each other to act in a safe manner and do their utmost to avoid endangering other road users, regardless of who has right of way. 

Section 215 of the Highway Code sets out how road users should act when there's a horse on the road. It says that: 

  • Drivers should take 'great care' and 'treat all horses as a potential hazard' 
  • Drivers should 'pass wide and slowly' when passing a horse and always listen to a rider's request to slow down or stop.

If a driver doesn't slow down or drives in a dangerous or inconsiderate way around horses on the road, try to get their number plate and report it to your local police station. 

For advice on your situation, or any other equine legal matters, please feel free to contact Rebecca Stojak, an equine law specialist, on 0115 945 4678 and rebecca.stojak@shma.co.uk