ALRTA puts spotlight on horse transport review


Land Transport of Horses consultation paper considers standards updates

ALRTA puts spotlight on horse transport review
Graeme Hoare

 

The Australian Livestock and Rural Transporters Association (ALRTA) has responded to a review exploring potential horse transport standards improvements.

Australian and state and territory agriculture ministers recently directed Animal Welfare Task Group (AWTG) to review current standards in light of emerging research.

Led by the Queensland Department of Agriculture and Fisheries, it released a Land Transport of Horses consultation paper towards the end of February, containing proposals to establish new standards and guidelines for the sector.

The paper was considered by the ALRTA Driver and Animal Welfare Committee and interested horse carriers.
 
ALRTA driver and animal welfare committee chair Graeme Hoare says achieving good welfare outcomes in horse transport was all about balance and education.


Read about ALRTA's campaigning for truck driver amenity accessiblity, here


"ALRTA agrees that the Land Transport Standards applicable to horses should be updated and improved," Hoare says.
 
"However, this must be balanced against the competing demands of driver welfare, road safety, personal safety of horse handlers and practical considerations concerning the design of trailers and availability of supporting off-road infrastructure.
 
"There is also a need to better promote the current Land Transport Standards for horses."
 
The submission includes 24 recommendations covering issues such as time off water, rest, record keeping, prevention of heat stress, fitness for journey, loading density, mixing of animals, use of dogs and restraints.

"While professional carriers are generally aware of and adhere to the existing standards, more effort is required to educate private or occasional carriers," Hoare adds.

"It does little good to burden professional carriers who are already highly mindful of animal welfare with new rules that will just be ignored by other groups."
 
"ALRTA looks forward to further consultation on refined proposals later in 2021.

The consultation paper is available here and ALRTA’s response here.

 

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