Equestrian Winter Woes
Accidents With Horses
If you take on any kind of freelance work, it’s always important to ensure you’re adequately covered for accident or illness – but this becomes even more crucial in the winter months, when risk levels are often increased by fresh horses, black ice, and spates of the flu. This is a great time to check the fine print of your policy: are you covered in case you’re injured and can’t work? How about if you fall ill and need to take some time off to recover? It’s well worth finding out whether you’re able to claim if you have an accident on the way to or from a job, too – particularly if you often travel to yards early in the morning, before the gritters have tackled your route.
Problems Around The Yard
One of the conditions of any insurance policy is that you must take reasonable precautions to protect your assets from damage. That means it’s doubly important to do a yard MOT before the worst of the weather hits, because any negligence can negate a claim down the line. Ensure you check your electrics: are sockets well protected against the elements? Are light fixtures functional and clear of dust? Have appliances, such as kettles, been PAT tested?
It’s also important to note any areas that may be prone to flooding and put in place a contingency plan to avoid a soggy situation. Clear out drains, check gutters are free of debris and secure, and fix any leaks so that when an inevitable winter storm blows in, you’re able to batten down the hatches and protect your yard and its equine residents.
Finally, ensure you have yard insurance and take note of your policy’s inclusions and exclusions for visitors to your yard. Are you covered if they’re injured by a horse or, for example, a patch of ice? A quick call to your insurer can help you ensure you’re protected if anything goes wrong.
Keeping The Show On The Road
Similarly, you should take the time to prepare your transport for winter – particularly if you’re unlikely to use it over the next few months. Make sure it’s clean and empty of any waste that could encourage rodent activity, and check all doors, windows and ramps to make sure they’re adequately sealed and weatherproof. Unhook batteries and isolators while your lorry is out of action, and plan to run it regularly, even if just for a spin around the yard, to keep everything in good working order. For peace of mind, contact your insurer about your breakdown recovery coverage – many policies only offer this if you’re away from home, but Shearwater’s includes home/yard start, too. This can make a huge difference if you need to use your lorry in an emergency.
To discuss any of your equestrian insurance needs speak to one of the experts at Shearwater today via 01992 707318 or request a quote online.