Body protectors that conform to the revised European safety standard could be on the market by the end of the year and a new body protector for carriage driving is to be introduced.

The British Equestrian Trade Association (BETA) has adopted the revision to the EN13158/BETA 2000 standard for body protectors agreed by the European Committee for Standardisation (CEN) in November. But BETA was quick to say the revision is just a “tweak” of the old one.

BETA chief executive Claire Williams told H&H: “We don’t want people to think garments conforming to the BETA 2000 standard are not safe.

“Impact absorption is the same,” she said, adding that the revision reflected improvements, such as extra padding over zips, which some manufacturers have adopted already.

Protectors that conform to the revised standard BETA 2009 should be on the market by the end of the year.

KC Sport, which makes the Rodney Powell brand, and Airowear are also going to make a completely new body protector for carriage driving, following the creation of a standard for the sport by BETA and the CEN.

The Airowear driving body protector will be shorter in the back, as drivers have a seated position, and will allow them the movement necessary to handle their horses.

Read this news story in full in the current issue of Horse & Hound (12 March, ’09)