The creators of a new product designed for hacking out say it will “save lives”, of horses and riders.
The VisiWhip is a reflective flag that hangs on the end of a whip, “ensuring riders have protected space and maximum visual impact with other road users”.
A spokesman for the product said: “VisiWhip is an equine safety product, designed to assist horse riders in clearly occupying and protecting the road space that they need, and signal their unequivocal presence to other road users.”
Heather Muir, who designed the flag, said that as a rider, she has seen the dangers equestrians face on the roads. The aim is that the flag protects the rider’s space and has a visual impact on other road users.
“Last year, there were 3,552 equine-related accidents on Britain’s roads resulting in 68 dead horses and 139 riders injured,” she said. “I have felt the danger on the roads myself, and it’s getting worse, which is why I have created a whip to be used as a traffic signalling and warning device to assist riders and other road users.”
Heather told H&H some riders have raised concerns that their horses might react negatively to the flag, and she is working with natural horsemanship experts to produce videos to help people with desensitising horses.
“I ride with mine every day and it’s probably saved my life a couple of times,” she said.
The product is launched in partnership with the Pass Wide & Slow campaign group.
PWAS founder Debbie Smith said: “Pass Wide and Slow are proud that VisiWhip have come to us to launch their new product. Both PWAS and Visiwhip have a common goal of making the roads safer for equestrians.
“PWAS are also very thankful of VisiWhip’s donation; for every Visiwhip sold in the PWAS group, a 10% donation will be donated to aid support for future campaigns.”
The flag comes with a whip or on its own to be fixed to a schooling whip.
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