- it would be for the most realistic simulation experience possible.
Dropping the tongue IMO would actually be more unsafe than riding a runaway out. Too many things can happen that would potentially cause greater damage and injury to all involved - horses included. The worst accident I have been involved in was the result of a youngster stepping over the pole accidentally and panicking in a turn and causing a runaway situation. The owner/driver was thrown completely from the surrey (held 15) and spent many weeks in the hospital, months at a rehab facility and even longer at home going to PT. She was nearly killed. Honestly I thought she was. Her injuries were massive and life threatening. Besides my injuries there were no others and we were loaded to capacity. That would not have been the result had I not been able to grab the reins and "steer". Dropping the tongue would have meant overturning or the tongue potentially going through a wheel and we'd have lost the horses to a collision with oncoming traffic. As the one that grabbed the reins I had three choices and a split second to decide. Oncoming traffic, barbed wire fencing or a row of parked cars. I chose the cars. The horses came through with minor injuries. The vehicle the 2y.o. literally landed on was smashed flat and she had to be backed off as her front legs were over the hood, body over the body and rear legs over the trunk. Her teammate took the drivers side mirror in the shoulder which was the worst done to either of them. Lots of swelling, muscle bruising and a small hematoma. No passenger sustained serious injury though there were a few bumps and bruises. Staying on the road would have put us in the path of oncoming traffic which could have resulted in serious injury or death to not just the horses but the two of us and possibly passengers. The barbed wire would have meant serious injury or death for the horses and potentially over turning the vehicle while running them into the parked car stopped forward motion. My injury was a result of grabbing the reins and not of the impact itself. The owner's injuries were the result of being thrown from the vehicle. That said there is much more danger involved being restrained than unrestrained.
Waivers protected the owner from frivolous lawsuits. Insurance paid for the injuries and damage to both vehicles. Without the waivers the owner would have had no insurance and could have lost everything had someone sued even for minor injury. There was no gross negligence. The ride was also posted with the standard Warning sign. You can copy paste this to see an example Equine Professional Is Not Liable Sign NHE-18362-Texas Recreation
Last edited by QtrBel; 10-30-2018 at 01:02 PM.