Loose pony closes motorway at rush hour

  • Major traffic disruption was caused on a motorway in Leicestershire this morning (Monday 26 January) when a small pony escaped from its field.

    Leicestershire police told H&H that the loose pony had been reported just before 8am.

    The pony was on running loose on the southbound carriageway of the M1 (not pictured) close to junction 21a.

    “The pony moved onto the grass verge and we put a rolling roadblock in place to try and catch it,” a spokesman from Leicestershire police said.

    “Highway Officers were called and assisted. The officers managed to get the pony back to its field and the closure was lifted.”

    Leicestershire Road Policing also kept motorists up to date with the incident on social media and a reported that the motorway was all clear again shortly after 9am.

    “The result of chasing horses on the M1 is that both the car and the officer needed to be jet washed,” said a later Tweet (pictured below).

    Worrying trend

    It is unclear how the pony escaped in this instance, but it is the latest in a number of cases of loose horses being killed or injured after breaking out onto roads.

    In December equine charities urged horse owners to check their fencing to make sure that animals cannot escape.

    “We would always advise owners to ensure that their horse is kept in a field with secure fencing and if a horse is tethered, to ensure that he is tethered safely according to the Code of Practice on Tethering,” said a spokesman for World Horse Welfare.

    “Always make sure that you make regular checks on your horse to ensure that he is kept in a safe and secure environment, thus reducing the chance of any harm coming to your animal or others.”

    Owners can potentially be liable under the Animals Act 1971 if a horse escapes and causes an accident.

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