Kineton driver banned for a year after crashing into horse - which had to be put down

A man from Kineton has been banned from driving for a year after crashing into a horse and rider on a country lane, leading to the horse being put down.
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Seventy-six-year-old Christopher John Wixey of Banbury Street claimed he was blinded by the low sun when he collided with the horse and rider at 11.30am on Monday January 2.

Police said that he had been driving his blue Seat Toleda along Tysoe Road without adjusting his driving to the conditions when he hit the back of a horse being ridden by its female owner.

He has been disqualified from driving for 12 months, with requirements to take an extended test of competence before driving again, and fined £540 after pleading guilty to causing serious injury by careless and inconsiderate driving.

Seventy-six-year-old Christopher John Wixey claimed he was blinded by the low sun when he collided with the horse and rider.Seventy-six-year-old Christopher John Wixey claimed he was blinded by the low sun when he collided with the horse and rider.
Seventy-six-year-old Christopher John Wixey claimed he was blinded by the low sun when he collided with the horse and rider.

Coventry Crown Court heard how the driver caused significant damage to the horse’s rear legs and the back of its body, leading to it being put to sleep by vets at the roadside.

The collision also caused the rider of the horse to sustain physical harm amounting to grievous bodily harm after she was thrown from the horse, hitting the ground with significant force.

PC Adam Fletcher said: "Christopher Wixey drove in a careless and inconsiderate way, and this is reflected in the sentence today. As well as the loss of her horse, the rider suffered significant injuries, both physical and psychological, as a result of this collision, and we hope this will offer her some closure today.

"We are taking this opportunity to remind drivers that they should always drive according to the conditions. This often means slowing down and expecting the unexpected on rural roads where there may be horses, cyclists, and pedestrians enjoying the countryside. These road users are vulnerable, and all drivers are expected to always take extra care to pass them safely."

In 2022, 69 horses were killed across Britain and 139 riders were injured due to collisions on the road.

Carol Cotterill of Warwickshire Horse Watch and Warwickshire Rural Crime Team said: "This case highlights how careful drivers need to be on our rural roads all of the time.

"The Highway Code was updated in 2022 and is now specific about what drivers and motorcyclists need to do to safely pass horses: slow down to a maximum of 10mph, be patient, do not sound your horn or rev the engine, and only when safe to do so, pass the horse wide and slow (2 metres minimum if possible) and drive slowly away.

"Horse riders have to use rural roads for a number of reasons, so we are asking other road users to always be on the lookout for them and to be ready to slow down and stop if you need to. Never be tempted to squeeze past a horse on the road, as they are large, and by passing them too closely or too fast, you are risking your own life as well as the lives of the horse and rider or carriage driver."

To report and submit digital footage showing potential moving traffic offences such as dangerous or careless driving to Warwickshire Police, visit www.warwickshire.police.uk/OperationSnap