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Make sure you don’t get taken for a ride on liability

You could be giving a wagon ride for a child’s birthday party or a romantic carriage ride so a customer can propose to his girlfriend. In any case, you need to make sure that you have insurance for your horse drawn vehicle ride services in Ontario. With multiple passengers, and often bystanders in the cases of fairs or festivals, there are risks of liability all around.

Because horses can sometimes act unpredictably, especially in busy areas, you also need to be concerned about property damage as well. This places horse vehicle incidents at a high risk level.

What you’ll discover in this report:

  • Common claims that people make involving carriage and wagon rides
  • How you can plan ahead
  • The coverage offered by a Commercial General Liability Policy

What are the most common claim incidents?

  • While stepping in or out of the horse drawn vehicle, a passenger gets hurt.
  • While falling off (or jumping) a horse drawn vehicle passengers are injured and/or damage or lose personal items during the fall.
  • While on the street the horse and the vehicle come too close to a car damaging it.
  • The horse pulling the vehicle becomes frightened and runs away uncontrolled damaging cars, buildings, lawns or other property.
  • A bystander gets to close to the horse and it bites, kicks or steps on them.

How can I plan ahead?

We know that you care about the horses and the people that come for a carriage ride or a wagon ride. There are steps to take to make sure that an accident never happens in the first place.

1. Enforce rules.
Look around and develop rules for your environment for both horses and people. Also write procedures. Then train every staff member to make sure they understand your rules and procedures.

2. Plan for emergencies.
Emergencies happen, but the better prepared you are, the better chance you have of providing the proper care to all the horses. If you’re prepared you can minimize the severity of any accident.

3. Develop semi-annual inspections of your equipment.
By inspecting your equipment for potential hazards, you can take care of them before an incident occurs.

4. Prepare a written waiver and review Ontario’s Occupiers’ Liability Act.
Anyone who participates in any horse activities on your premises needs to complete and sign the waiver. Make sure that you keep the signed forms on file and safely stored. The Occupiers’ Liability Act states that the stable owner/operator owes a duty of care to the people who enter their premises. This assures that any property they bring on your premises with them is also reasonably safe. You are free to restrict, modify or exclude this duty of care through your written waiver.

5. Purchase an Equine Liability Insurance Policy.
Protect you and your business with an insurance company that knows horses and your business. You want to make sure that any legal feels are covered, claim costs and settlements to ensure that in the case of an accident, your business doesn’t suffer a financial loss.

What’s included in the Commercial General Liability Policy?

The policy gives you maximum limits or amounts of liability insurance for:

  • Medical expenses:  You can be sure a claimant’s low cost medical expenses are covered without a lot of questions about liability or responsibility. 
  • Legal defense costs: You can save your business the financial burden of court costs if you’re sued, whether the case has merit or not.
  • Claims or settlement costs: Without this policy you could be held responsible for bodily injury and property damage claims. 

People have a fascination with horse drawn carriages or wagons, even sleighs pulled by horses in the winter. You’re happy to provide the service. At Henry Equestrian Insurance Ltd., we want to make sure that your business is covered so that you can keep providing the service. Contact us today or simply click on Get a Free Quote, and we’ll have a quote to you in 1 day.