Constable Jaimee McDonald and her horse Cisco, pictured on
Dukes Rd, Mosgiel, this week, are looking forward to
sharing the roads safely with drivers this summer. Photo by
Police are calling for drivers and horse riders to pay
attention around the Taieri as the longer days see more riders
take to the roads.
Constable Jaimee McDonald, of Dunedin, said both drivers and
horse riders had a right to use the road and shared a
responsibility to consider each other's safety.
It was particularly important that people knew how to drive
around horses as daylight saving and the warmer weather
brought more users out on to the road.
Mosgiel police had already received several complaints,
including one each from a driver and a rider involved in the
same close call, she said.
It was also timely to remind people of driving safely around
horses, following a recent incident in Auckland where a
girl's horse had to be put down after it was clipped by a
The 15-year-old and her friend were riding on a rural
footpath, but the driver's speed and proximity spooked the
animal and its back leg slipped on to the road and into the
rear of the truck.
Const McDonald said it was difficult to actively police all
roads, and also difficult for riders to note down
registration plates as they were usually too busy trying to
get their horses under control at the time of an incident.
She said Mosgiel police were keeping an eye on rural roads
around the Taieri, but educating drivers and horse riders was
the key to safer sharing of roads.
The key message was for drivers to pass horses slowly and
wide, she said.
Passing wide helped minimise the likelihood of a horse
jumping sideways into the pathway of a vehicle.
The rule applied to both motorised vehicles and cyclists, as
most horses would react more to a cyclist speeding past than
a car, she said.
All road users needed to courteous.
''This applies to horse riders and motorists.''
Horse riders needed to ride on the left side of the road, and
wear high-visibility clothing to ensure they could be seen.