Bill Would Outlaw Double-Decker Horse Trailers

The bill would made it illegal to transport horses across state lines in double-decker trailers.
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Bipartisan legislation that would made it illegal to transport horses across state lines in double-decker trailers has been introduced into the U.S. House of Representatives.

Introduced by Representatives Steve Cohen (D-TN) and Walter B. Jones (R-NC) on Oct. 12, HR 4040, the Horse Transportation Safety Act, would prohibit the interstate transport of horses in a motor vehicle containing two or more levels stacked on top of one another. If passed, violators could be subject to fines of at least $100 for each horse involved.

The measure is the latest incarnation of similar legislation prompted by a 2007 roll-over accident involving 59 draft horses traveling from Indiana to Minnesota in a double-decker trailer. Seventeen horses were killed and several more were injured.

In a written statement the USDA said double-decker trailers do not provide adequate headroom for adult horses. Research by the National Agriculture Safety Database called for at least a 7- to 8- foot ceiling clearance to provide adequate headroom for a 15-hand horse to stand with normal posture while traveling

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Written by:

Pat Raia is a veteran journalist who enjoys covering equine welfare, industry, and news. In her spare time, she enjoys riding her Tennessee Walking Horse, Sonny.

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