I was very pleased to host Martin Clunes, President of the British Horse Society, at the launch the society's new virtual reality film.
Part of the BHS’s Dead Slow Campaign designed to educate and influence driver behaviour on how to pass horses safely, the film involves drivers and other road users with an experience that emphasises key safety messages.
When I was first elected, I was contacted by Debbie Smith, from Rosudgeon, who started a petition signed by well over 100,000 people in support of her ‘Pass Wide and Slow’ campaign. She and I met with the Transport Minister to call for action to make our roads safer for horses, their riders, cyclists and walkers.
Around, 80% of horse and rider-related accidents are avoidable as they are caused by drivers travelling too fast or too close to horses.
And last autumn I was able to lead a debate on the issue, calling on the Government to launch a marketing campaign promoting safety measures for horses on rural roads as well as for a possible reduction in the speed limit from 60mph on single carriageway rural roads and for police to use their powers to pursue drivers who fail to act with due diligence around horses.
Advice for motorists and riders on how to proceed safely on the road can be found at http://think.direct.gov.uk/horses.html