At about 7:00 pm on Sunday, 29th July 2018, a vehicle collided with a horse on the southbound lane of the dual carriageway near its intersection with the entrance to the Bisee community.
According to an eyewitness, the accident occurred when a few young men from Bisee attempted to lead a horse (the mare), and its offspring (the foal), across the dual carriageway from the Beachcomber gap through the emergency access on the median barrier into the Bisee junction.
“ The mare, which was tethered and had a bridle, was led through the emergency access by the young guys who expected the foal to automatically follow its mother through the emergency access,” the eyewitness told St Lucia Times.
“The foal became confused and did an about turn before making its way through a gap in the emergency access. Unfortunately because it was dark, an SUV collided with the foal as it unexpectedly entered the southbound lane of the dual carriageway into the path of the SUV. The bonnet of the SUV was damaged,” the eyewitness recalled.
It was reported that the foal was injured and came to rest on its side on one lane of the dual carriageway.
“The young guys tried to remove the mare from the accident scene as they fled and an argument and scuffle occurred between the SUV driver and the young guys, near the Bisee junction, during which time the mare became untethered and lost its bridle, when it bolted into the southbound lane leaving the SUV driver with the bridle! The driver, now on foot, followed the mare around for a while in a futile attempt to capture it but the mare eventually returned, due to the maternal instinct, to be at the side of its injured foal ,a scene which some may find distressing.”
The eyewitness said that the accident was avoidable in so many ways and expressed the view that several questions should be asked as the Traffic Police investigate this matter:
- Were the young guys oblivious to the traffic hazard created when they crossed the busy dual carriageway under the cover of darkness with the mare and its foal?
- The emergency access through the median barrier is meant for use by emergency vehicles and personnel so is it illegal to use this access for other purposes?
- It became obvious that the unbridled mare would not abandon its injured foal so how would the Police humanely separate the foal from its mother without further stressing the mare?
- Do local vets and the St. Lucia Animal Protection Society (SLAPS) provide free emergency veterinary services for incidents like this?