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Deadly Incident Highlights the Risk to Horses and the Public
For Immediate Release:June 7, 2010
Contact:Lisa Wathne 757-622-7382
Thunder Bay, Ontario -- Today, PETA sent an urgent letter to Thunder Bay Mayor Lynn Peterson calling on her to implement a ban on horse-drawn carriages in the city. PETA's letter follows a May 31 incident in which 4-year-old Willow Scott-Hannam was fatally injured after a horse who was being used to pull a carriage became startled and bolted while being petted by Willow and other kindergartners. "The wheel [of the carriage] went over Willow's body [and] injured the children," a friend of Willow's family told news sources.
In the letter, PETA points out that incidents involving injury or death have occurred in nearly every city in which horse-drawn carriages operate, causing fatal injuries to horses, motorists, onlookers, carriage operators, and passengers.
"Forcing horses to pull heavy loads is cruel, and it's always an accident waiting to happen," says PETA Director Debbie Leahy. "This tragic incident should be a wake-up call to the people of Thunder Bay. The only way to ensure the safety of bystanders as well as horses is to ban horse-drawn carriages, so we urge the mayor to act now to prevent future tragedies."
A growing number of cities--including Toronto; London; Paris; Beijing; Biloxi, Miss.; Las Vegas and Reno, Nev.; Palm Beach, Panama City, Key West, Deerfield Beach, and Pompano Beach, Fla.; Santa Fe, N.M.; and Camden, N.J.--have banned horse-drawn carriages.
For more information, please visit PETA.org.
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