A new code of practice designed to help reduce horse-related injuries and fatalities among novice and beginner riders has been introduced across New South Wales.
The code is the first of its kind in Australia and is designed to assist employers and workers in the horse industry reduce injuries and meet their workplace safety responsibilities.
Of the 133 fatalities that occurred Australia-wide between 2000 and 2014, 18 per cent involved people under the age of 20.
“The code will help prevent horse-related injuries and fatalities among beginner and inexperienced riders and aims to ensure that the temperament of the horse and the experience of the rider are adequately matched,” Member for the South Coast Shelley Hancock said.
“The code has been developed following extensive consultation with more than 100 responses to calls for comment from key industry groups and individuals.”
A number of businesses across the South Coast offer horse-related activities. The new code has been designed to provide them with practical tools to ensure they are complying with their obligations and doing everything they can to prevent injuries and fatalities.
Practical tools include a checklist for riders and a checklist for horses, to evaluate the level and skill of the rider and also to help assess the suitability of the horse for the activity being undertaken.
The code is another step from the NSW Government to improving safety for inexperienced and novice horse riders, such as those participating in pony clubs, at jackaroo and jillaroo schools and trail riding schools.
The Code of Practice follows extensive consultation with stakeholders and individuals.
It will come into effect on 1 February 2017.
A copy of the code is available from www.safework.nsw.gov.au
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