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A horse was killed earlier this week after being thrown from its trailer on the M40 motorway on the way home from a competition.

The accident happened on Tuesday evening, when a van swerved in front of the Nissan pick-up truck towing a trailer with two horses.

The car and trailer were forced onto the hard shoulder causing the trailer to jack-knife and spin round, flinging the rear ramp open.

Police believe one of the horses was thrown out by the force and took off into the traffic, colliding head-on with a car and then a van.

The horse sustained fatal injuries and died at the scene.

The second horse became trapped in the broken trailer with the partition resting on its withers. Once freed, it was treated at the scene for bruising and minor skin wounds by vet John Brooks.

He told H&H: “It was dark and the horses were returning from a competition at Solihull. It seems that the force of the accident caused the trailer to almost break apart at the seams.

We visited the second horse today and it’s making a good recovery.”

A spokesperson for the West Midlands ambulance service, who attended the scene, said: “Neither of the two men driving the van or car were injured. Both were assessed by ambulance staff and were discharged at the scene.”

“The woman driving the pick-up truck was also uninjured.”

The accident happened on the southbound carriageway of the M40 between Lapworth, junction 16, and Warwick, junction 15, in Warwickshire.