We came across a horrific video posted on social media by Fianna Fail Cllr Andrew McGuinness. It shows a video of a man riding a sulky horse and cart at high speed on a main road and having a major collision with a road sign resulting in the death of the horse and the man be taken to hospital.
According to Cllr McGuinness “Not only has it resulted in a dead horse but it could also have caused a serious accident on the Ring Road and the driver (who appears to be very young) is lucky to be alive! This is not culture! Its down right cruelty and abuse and a complete lack of regard for the law and the safety of road users. “
Sulky racing and riding has come under a lot of pressure from many animal rights groups. There are laws to ban sulky racing but according to Cllr McGuinness “we have raised sulky racing publicly with the guards on numerous occasions and it only seems to get worse!”
Now many people will argue that sulky racing/riding is part of the travelling Communities heritage. We gave the Travelling Community Ethnic Minority status earlier this year and should we not respect their culture? We may not understand it but it is part of their culture just like bull fighting and bull running in Spain.
However is this becoming a nuisance on our roads and should be banned completely? Should we start to see prosecutions or people who defy the law, see their horses taken away from them and see the carts banned fully from the roads. After all they are using the main roads and are not regulated.
So really is this culture or animal torture and should sulky driving/racing be removed from Irish roads?