Drive to keep riders safe on the roads

Rider Laura Birley is pictured with PCSO Kathryn Bean and PC Hannah McPeake.
Rider Laura Birley is pictured with PCSO Kathryn Bean and PC Hannah McPeake.

A talented rider is backing North Yorkshire Police’s efforts to keep horses and their riders safe on the roads.

Eventer Laura Birley, 21, has joined police officers in urging riders to be safe and wear hi-viz clothing, particularly when on roads.

Laura and her horse Dan recently took time out to support the force’s campaign to promote the importance of rider safety, and to try out hi-viz clothing loaned by R&R Country’s Selby store.

Laura said that when she is hacking she wears hi-viz so that drivers can see her.

She also makes sure that the she is in control of her horses and doesn’t listen to music or use her phone.

She said: “I am always courteous to drivers, and always thank them when they drive past us in a considerate way.”

PC Hannah McPeake, of North Yorkshire Police’s Rural Taskforce, said: “We are still seeing people riding on the roads with no hi-viz clothing. Even though we are moving into spring time, and the nights are lighter, hi-viz clothing is still important. Sometimes the days can still be overcast and dull or the shadows from trees and hedges can create dark areas.

“Bright colours are excellent for making you stand out on the road, and the new reflective material really stands out when lights are on it.”

Operation Spartan is North Yorkshire Police’s response to vulnerable road users in the county. As part of the operation, people are asked to submit details of instances of dangerous or anti-social driving they have witnessed via an online form at