A woman has failed in a bid to sue her employer after she fell from a horse, when the judge dismissed her case as an “ordinary riding accident”.
Alexandra Kublin was riding on the road in Lambourn, Berks, on 13 August 2009 when she fell and broke her ankle.
She had been working as a groom for Jane Allison at her pre-training and breaking yard, Jane Allison Equestrian Ltd, for just 10 days. Ms Kublin had been riding a three-year-old cob called Olly when he spooked, spun and fell on her.
The case came to court on 1 February this year and was dismissed on 30 April.
Ms Kublin claimed that Ms Allison was negligent for allowing her to ride the horse, whom she believed her employer knew was dangerous.
But the judge at Bicester County Court found that Ms Kublin was an experienced horsewoman and declared that the fall was merely an “ordinary riding accident”.
“I am just so relieved it is all over,” said Ms Allison. “It has been a very stressful and worrying time. It has made me much more wary about employing people.”
Jo Rixon from the equine law team at Darby’s Solicitors in Oxford said this was an important case for equestrian employers.
“Working with horses carries with it an inherent risk and it is impossible to eliminate all risks associated,” she said.
“This seems to be recognised by the courts when dealing with these cases.
“But I would stress that employers are reminded to ensure they have adequate measures in place to minimise risks wherever possible.”
This news story was first published in Horse & Hound magazine (23 May 2013)