Roads in west Wales saw more than 100 horse-related road incidents – including a death – in 2023, it has been revealed.

Alarming new statistics from equine charity The British Horse Society (BHS) show that, between them, the three counties of Carmarthenshire, Ceredigion and Pembrokeshire saw more than a third of the incidents in the whole of Wales.

Carmarthenshire experienced the most incidents with 39, followed by Pembrokeshire with 35 and then Ceredigion with 31 incidents.

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The figures are taken from reports to the BHS.

Carriage pony

The charity said that the horse’s death in Carmarthenshire occurred on the B4308 near Kidwelly and involved a carriage pony that was frightened by a van. The pony bolted and then unfortunately went over a cattle grid.

Welsh incidents in 2023 totalled 308, with the number rising by six per cent - from 2022.

This is despite the changes implemented in the Highway Code in 2022, which set out clear guidance for passing equestrians safely.

Too close

Overall, 3,383 incidents were recorded via the BHS’s Horse i app across the UK in 2023, with 85 per cent of those occurring because a vehicle passed by too closely or too quickly.

Director of safety at The British Horse Society, Alan Hiscox, said: “Looking at the 2023 statistics, it is clear that a significant number of drivers are still unaware of the advice in the Highway Code and the importance of driving carefully when passing and approaching horses."

Dead Slow

As part of their Dead Slow road safety campaign, the BHS continue to inform and involve road users on how to pass horses safely as well as how impactful passing horses too quickly and closely can be.

The equine charity are urging drivers to pass horses at no more than 10mph and to leave at least two metres distance.

Mr Hiscox added: "Unfortunately, it isn’t always possible for equestrians to stay off the roads due to the shrinking bridleway network. That is why it’s so important that we all play our part to make sure everyone remains safe.”

To learn more about The British Horse Society’s Dead Slow campaign and how you can help, visit: