Home | Latest News | Updates | Topics | News Archive | Risk Assessment | For Everyone | For Businesses | Strategy | "Waxed Jackets" | Links | Search | About | Contact

Riding Safely

News for November & December 2006

The following News Digest covers the period 1st November to 31st December 2006 


See the previous news digest for 1st September to 31st October 2006 >>>


See the digest for 1st January to 28th February 2007 >>>

News Headlines
Animal Welfare Act receives Royal Assent  - The Act will come into effect on 6 April 2007.
Defra published a draft new Animal Welfare Delivery Strategy for public consultation on 28 November 2006.
(Full details on both these items in the "Horse Welfare" section below)


Horse Welfare

Animal Welfare Act receives Royal Assent  

The most important piece of animal welfare legislation for nearly a century received Royal Assent today.

By updating and bringing together more than 20 pieces of animal welfare legislation relating to farmed and non-farmed animals, the Animal Welfare Act 2006 will:

* introduce a "duty of care" on people to ensure the needs of any animal for which they are responsible;

* create a new offence of failing to provide for the needs of an animal in your care;

* allow action to protect animals to be taken much earlier.- rather than have to wait for an animal to show the signs of suffering, enforcers will be able to intervene before suffering begins;

* place more emphasis on owners and keepers who will need to understand their responsibilities and take all reasonable steps to provide for the needs of their animals.

Animal Health Minister Ben Bradshaw said: "The most fundamental piece of animal welfare legislation for nearly a century has now passed into law. The Government believes that by extending the duty of care to non-farmed animals, it will reduce animal suffering in this country. This is the culmination of several years’ work during which the government has worked closely with stakeholders. The result is legislation of which we can all be rightly proud."

Debby Reynolds, Chief Veterinary Officer, said: "I am delighted that the Animal Welfare Bill has now received Royal Assent. The bringing up to date of animal welfare legislation will help to improve the way people look after their animals. The extra powers will mean that action can now be taken before an animal starts to suffer, and will put companion animals on the same legislative footing as farmed animals. The new Act forms an important part of our overall strategy on animal health and welfare."

Further Information:

1. The Act will come into effect on 6 April 2007.

2. For more information on the Animal Welfare Act go to: http://www.defra.gov.uk/animalh/welfare/bill

Source:   Department for Environment, Food And Rural Affairs (National) – 8 November 2006


Consultation on a draft new Animal Welfare Delivery Strategy

Defra published a draft new Animal Welfare Delivery Strategy for public consultation on 28 November 2006.

You can respond and please note that the deadline for responses will be 20 February 2007.

The Strategy sets out Government’s vision for the delivery of animal welfare in England. It is aimed at stakeholders in all sectors and sets a clear direction of travel for achieving good welfare in the future.

It includes 5 specific Strategic Goals, focused on key areas, and it explains that improvements in welfare will require a move towards greater partnership working, with an appropriate division of responsibility between Government and its stakeholders and an increased focus on innovative, non-regulatory delivery mechanisms.

 It defines clear roles and responsibilities for those involved in the care of animals and it sets out principles for use in prioritising future work.

Full information can be found at:




No one likes an accident. Those featured in this section come from media sources and often lack the detail of the circumstances that may have contributed to the tragic outcomes. Even so, by being aware of the types of accidents that have happened in the past may help to prevent similar accidents occurring in the future.

Seriously injured rider saved from further injury by his hat

The owner of a leisure centre in the Burnley area was airlifted to hospital with serious injuries after an accident on the centre’s cross-country course.  He escaped even more serious injury when his riding hat protected him when his horse inadvertently kicked him when he was on the ground.  His riding hat was described as “demolished”.

Read more from Burnley Today (24 November 2006) at:


The Crow Wood Leisure Centre includes a 1 million equestrian facility.  More details at: http://www.crowwood.com/

eemail.gif If you know of any equestrian related accidents or near-misses then please share them with Riding Safely
Doing so may save a life or a lifetime of incapacity


Health and Safety Executive (HSE) news


Take note of the following if you have overhead power lines crossing your property

Essex firm and individual prosecuted after death of visiting worker  

Case highlights risks involved with overhead power lines

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) today warned companies to be aware of the serious risks involved from contact with or working in close proximity to overhead power lines following the sentencing today (Tuesday 7 November) at St Albans Crown Court, of Lyons Landfill Ltd and Francis Michael Lyons (trading as Frank Lyons Plant Services) of Felstead, Essex.

Both the company and Mr Lyons were fined 80,000 each, and each ordered to pay 35,000 prosecutions costs. HSE's prosecution follows a joint investigation with Hertfordshire Police into the death of a self-employed lorry driver, 56-year-old Mr Nathaniel Hugh Scollan (also known as Hugh Breffni), who was visiting a combined quarry and landfill site at Hollingson Meads Quarry, Pole Hole, Gilston, Harlow, on 10 Sept 2003.

Mr Scollan was electrocuted when the grab of the crane mounted on his lorry came into contact with overhead power lines. The investigation revealed that Mr Scollan parked beneath the overhead lines when waiting for a load of ballast from the quarry. He apparently raised the lorry-mounted crane and sustained fatal injuries from the subsequent electric shock. The site was poorly laid out with stockpiles encroaching near the overhead lines, inadequate signs, poorly designed crossing points and inadequate measures taken to keep plant clear of the lines.

HSE Principal Inspector, Mike Gibb, said:

"This was a tragic death that could have easily been prevented. Operators of plant may make mistakes and all reasonably practicable steps should be taken to ensure their errors don't result in loss of life or serious injury.

"I encourage all employers to carefully plan and put into place sensible precautions to prevent their workers, contractors or visitors to their site coming into contact with overhead power lines. Good management will reduce the risk of accidents happening.

"It is also important to remember that vehicles or mobile plant do not need to strike the overhead line for injury to occur. Electricity can arc across a surprising distance depending on the voltage and conditions."

Help and advice to put in place safe procedures for working near overhead power lines is available from HSE. HSE's guidance note GS 6 gives detailed advice. Where vehicles must work around live overhead power lines then barriers can prevent close approach and there should be carefully designed and defined passageways for plant to pass under the lines where this is essential.

Guidance on electricity in quarries and a leaflet about safe working near overhead power lines in agriculture is available on the HSE website at http://www.hse.gov.uk. Alternatively, ring HSE's Infoline on 0845 345 0055, fax 02920 859260 or e-mail: hseinformationservices@natbrit.com.

Further detail:

1. On 12 January 2006 Lyons Landfill Ltd and Frank Michael Lyons were both committed to trial after entering Not Guilty pleas at Hertford Magistrates Court, to charges brought against them by HSE under the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974 (HSWA).

2. On 13 October 2006 Lyons Landfill Ltd was convicted of an offence under Section 3(1) of the Act and Francis Michael Lyons (trading as Frank Lyons Staff Services) was convicted of an offence under Section 3(2) of the Act.

3. On 16 October 2006 Francis Michael Lyons was acquitted of an offence under Section 37 of the Act relating to his activities as a director of Lyons Landfill Ltd.

4. For details on each section of the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974 visit: http://www.hse.gov.uk

5. Detailed guidance is available in HSE Guidance note GS 6 Avoidance of danger from overhead electric power lines (3rd edition, ISBN 0-7176-1348-8, 5.00).

Source:  Health and Safety Executive (East) - 7 November 2006



International News

Daughter's fatal fall from horse inspires quest for helmets

A father is campaigning for the mandatory wearing of riding hats for minors following the death of his 12-year-old daughter

Read more at http://www.dailybulletin.com:80/news/ci_4911295

Source:  Inland Valley Daily Bulletin - Ontario,CA,USA 28 December 2006

Related Information:  In the UK It is a legal requirement that children aged 14 years or younger must wear a riding hat to at least BS4472 when riding on the road. This law was passed when the official BSI hat Standard was BS 4472. It is anticipated that the law will be changed to the current BS Standard. It is now recommended that a minimum of BS1384 is worn.


Looking Forward - Diary Dates
eemail.gif If you know of any forthcoming equestrian safety related events please contact Riding Safely 

BETA's Body Protector Survey Continues......

If you own a body protector then BETA (the British Equestrian Trade Association) want to hear from you!  

BETA are still conducting a survey to obtain information regarding the use and effectiveness of body protectors which in turn will be used to assist their continued development and promotion.


Help now by getting more details from BETA and take part in the survey


Responses to the BETA survey have already highlighted body protector issues - read the interim report from BETA


News of other Websites 
Association of British Riding Schools - ABRS
The ABRS have a new website address http://www.abrs-info.org/ and a new email address office@abrs-info.org
Business Essentials
Need to know if you're doing enough to comply with health, safety and environmental requirements?  Then this section is for you.  The information in this section will be repeated each month with the latest highlighted in yellow.
What you must do
The Health and Safety Executive list 10 key things you must do if you are in business.  Are you doing them all?  Check them out and get further help from http://www.hse.gov.uk/smallbusinesses/must.htm
What's new on the site?

The Riding Safely website is frequently updated.  The easiest way for you to check out what's been added on a day-to-day basis is to visit the website update section >>>


Subscription Information

Riding Safely is a free subscription newsletter.

If you’d like future editions of the Riding Safely newsletter emailed to you then click on the link below.

Please add me to your free email subscription list

Your e-mail address will only be used for the purpose of letting you know about Riding Safely updates. It will not be used for any other purposes whatsoever or passed onto third parties.

Check out previous news items
Visit the all of the News Archive >>>>>
Let Riding Safely know....... 
eemail.gifIf you have any safety related equestrian Press Releases or News stories then please

All Horse & Hound news items that are reproduced in this newsletter are done so with the permission of and are copyright of Horse & Hound/IPC Media

What's been updated?  Find out >>>

Riding Safely is not responsible for the content of external internet sites