Accident at a Show-What do YOU do?
Many of us that attend shows have unfortunately witnessed driving accidents, either in the ring or on a course. Although often times there are professional horsemen and women nearby to assist the driver and take control of the situation, there are instances where help is needed by the non-professional bystander. I am one of those non-professional individuals and the one time when I did need to help, I felt completely helpless; fumbling around and trying my hardest to not make the situation worse. I came across an article on Carriage.net that addressed this situation. “Some Thoughts on Accidents at Horse Events“, written by Kurt Schneider, discusses important steps to take and things to consider when faced with a driving accident, including a runaway horse:
If there is a runaway, DO NOT TRY TO GRAB THE HORSE. Let the driver have as much room as they need to get control of the situation. Generally, it is best for other competitors in the area to get to the center of the ring, leaving the rail to the runaway. The horse will stop when its fatigue overcomes its fear. The center of the ring is the place where you can move in any direction to stay out of the way of the runaway. Standing in front of a runaway horse and flapping your arms is a good way to get trampled and run over. Even grabbing a rein is more likely to result in a broken rein than a stopped horse.
Other areas are covered such as What to do at the scene of a carriage or cart accident, preparation for show organizers, and how to assess in what capacity you should help.
I think it is a very interesting article with important information to consider as we move into the 2008 show season.