Yes, There Was An Accident

Late Monday night, an SUV carrying 3 adults and 4 children rear ended a Chicago Carriage heading home after a shift downtown. The 4 children were treated at Lurie hospital and released. The driver of the carriage has a broken wrist but is otherwise fine. Milo the horse is fine, and has been checked over by Inspector Holcomb from Chicago’s Animal Care and Control.

So what does this mean?

Does it mean this?

I don’t THINK so. What both of these recent tweets fail to mention is that the horse and carriage didn’t collide with an SUV, but rather the SUV collided with the horse and carriage.

And I have to ask, how does an attentive driver not see an oversize dapple grey horse pulling a large white carriage with a highly reflective slow moving hazard triangle?


Were you paying attention? Were you driving too fast? Were you distracted? Were you on your PHONE?

Instead of questioning whether horse drawn carriages should be in Chicago, maybe we should be asking more important questions?




18 thoughts on “Yes, There Was An Accident”

  1. I think everyone should be allowed a job. The Carriages are super nice and the ride and history they provide about the cities they do them in are great. San Diego had them , VA has them , New Orleans they are historic and need and deserve to have their jobs and a way to make money for their families. I think it’s sad some are against them because of things they don’t understand and refuse to learn and study . Their stupidity should not mean someone’s lively hood.

  2. What you have there is a motor vehicle driver problem. Carriages rarely have accidents. It is much safer to ride in a carriage than to ride in a car. Horses have been working in big cities since ancient times. They have a right to be there so don’t blame the carriage industry, blame reckless motor vehicle drivers.

  3. Again Rarely the horse and carriage are at fault. We have been hit by folks on phones people in cars in to much of a hurry hit and runs and usually it’s all from behind us. ! And I will add. All of the horses and the coachpersons in Indianapolis have survived 30 + years. They are NOT the problem the drivers of the vehicles well your driving in a city or some neighborhood. If your driving properly. Would be amazing how fewer accidents would happen for carriages and cars. Thousands accidents around US every day in cars. 1 accident in 6 months “maybe” and carriage all over the news. Little unfair statistic.

  4. Are you kidding me? Who cares who is at fault?? When it’s a person vs a car or a horse vs a car they are going to get hurt or killed. Cars get totalled and go to a junkyard. People or horses go to the hospital or to the grave. What is your disconnect here?

    1. The issue here is that unfortunately, accidents happen. Claiming legal horse drawn carriages should be banned because motorists might hit them is invalid. Horses, like all living things, are susceptible to accidents all the time. Lily, the mare rescued by Jon Stewart and his wife, tripped and broke her neck in the pasture. Banning pastures, horses, or rescuing horses is not the answer.

      1. Yes, anyone can be injured or killed anywhere.  Where Lily died is not a valid argument here.   

        Horse drawn carriages are antiquated, and way past being useful, as a mode of transportation.  With the exception of the Amish, of course.  Horses are not meant to walk on asphalt too much.  The concussion sends vibrations up into their foot and that causes stress to their bones, joints and tendons.  Again, the horses also have no choice but to breathe in car exhaust – which causes respiratory problems, they have to pull weights up to 1000 lbs, they get spooked by traffic, they get no break from the heat as asphalt can be 50° above the ambiant air temperature. It’s cruel and it needs to stop. 

        And… when has rescuing ever been a bad thing?  It’s only bad for a person who can’t be bothered to take care of a horse that has made you so much money.  Horses past their usefulness in the horse-drawn carriage industry are usually sent to Mexico or Canada to be horrifically slaughtered to be used as food for human consumption.  Nice!

      2. It’s interesting to me that you “know” so much about our horses without speaking any truth. If carriage horses suffer as much as you say, why do they live and comfortably work so long, into their 20s and 30s? And if we “send” them to Mexico or Canada for slaughter, why are they all at our farm or happily retired to loving homes? As for being antiquated for transportation, we don’t use them for transportation, we enjoy and share them for entertainment, much as the horse show and lesson industry does. As for the temperature issues, we have restrictions which we follow. And again, the horses show no ill effects to their work. Use your eyes not your emotions when you pass judgment. You are allowed to disagree with how we enjoy our horses, but you are foolish to condemn us based on fallacies and assumptions.

    2. I support my local animal rescue and foster, not to mention that I’m a huge horse lover. However, I’m for increased penalties and fines for hitting a horse and/or carriage and doing public education before discontinuing such a wonderful practice. It’s like taking bicycles away from children because they cause so many accidents. Are we going to ban motorcycles, as well. Horseback riding is one of the most dangerous sports. Are we going to ban riding? What’s next? And, why do you feel the need to throw insults just because someone disagrees with you? It would seem to me that you need to check yourself regarding any disconnects. It’s funny how when you point a finger at someone, three fingers are pointing back.

  5. I never stated that I was talking about you… unless, you are the whole of the horse-drawn carriage industry. You say that I don’t speak the truth because it doesnt apply to you but everything I have stated is Incontrovertible. You say, and I quote… “Claiming legal horse drawn carriages should be banned because motorists might hit them is invalid.” How is that invalid when motorists do hit and injure or kill many horses pulling carriages. I could add link after link of horrific accidents because it happens all the time.

    Again here in your own words… If carriage horses suffer as much as you say, why do they live and comfortably work so long, into their 20s and 30s? And if we “send” them to Mexico or Canada for slaughter, why are they all at our farm or happily retired to loving homes? ”

    If you are making them work into their 20s and 30s then when do they have time to retire and just relax? Never is when I’m guessing.

    1. You’re becoming tiresome. Please check out past posts regarding retired carriage horses. Also, please post links to the horrific accidents that happen in Chicago time after time. Also, since what you are stating is incontrovertible, please post links supporting your statements. Not the talking points from animal rights websites, I mean actual proof. Photos of Chicago horses suffering what you’ve claimed along with their microchips confirming their identity. Did you know that? All Chicago carriage horses have microchips (or lip tattoo depending on their age). So please, give us this incontrovertible evidence.

      1. Here’s a Facebook group that posts about carriage accidents.

        Here are accidents in and around Central Park with police reports. 25 horse drawn carriage accidents in a 5 year period in Upper Manhattan alone.

        I could do this for a month and still not have listed all of the accidents horse drawn carriages have been in.

        Horses deserve better than this life you seem to think they relish in. They don’t like it and if you knew anything about horses – besides how much money they can make you – then you only need study their body language to know that they don’t like it.

        Horses deserve better.

      2. 5 accidents in NYC per year? For real, you find that significant?

        1. Every other method of transportation including walking has a worse average than this. Outside of maybe Segways.

        2. NYC is not Chicago.

        3. Want to compare resumes on horse experience? I guarantee you most carriage drivers can read their horses better than most passersby, but I personally can attest to understanding the horses’ behavior more accurately than you. For the thousandth time, DO NOT CONFUSE RELAXATION WITH EXHAUSTION OR “UNHAPPINESS.”

        If you knew even a bit about horses you’d already know this.

  6. Even one accident that includes a horse is significant. For that to be the 1st thing out of your mouth, as a rebuttal, is indicative of the heart of the problem. The problem being that you really just don’t care.

    Every other mode of transportation does not include an animal who would rather be anywhere else then working for you and having to breathe in car exhaust all day. No one said NYC was Chicago. It’s a place where people, of your ilk, also think it’s ok to use horses to make money from working them in an environment not suitable and very dangerous for them. Chicago, Central Park, St. Augustine, Phoenix, Salt Lake City, Baton Rogue, Boston, Atlanta, wherever. Who cares where it is… the question is why does it still continue? It’s one thing if it’s the main mode of transportation – besides walking or biking – like on the island of Inis Mor in the Aran Islands of Ireland or if you are Amish. It’s entirely another thing to make a horse work, as “entertainment” as you put it, in a place where vehicles outnumber them by the hundreds and that certainly is not entertaining to them.

    Resumes? I would never compare resumes with you. While mine has experience with horses on it, as does yours, mine says nothing of making a horse a slave… to do my bidding however I see fit. To have no regard for their happiness and comfort and to work them into their 20’s and 30’s while claiming that they go to a nice place to retire. No, that’s not on my resume and it’s a shame that it’s on yours. You think nothing about it except to continue to defend your abuse of a situation where you are the slave owner and your horses are your slaves.

    I would never confuse relaxation with exhaustion. Though you say that they are happy that doesn’t make it true. Horses are prey animals and with the wrong person can easily have their spirits broken. You disconnect from their real needs because of greed. I can only hope that sooner, than later, you will sincerely “listen” to your horses and put them out to pasture where they truly deserve to be.

    1. You judge us, but on what experience do you base your opinions? Do you sit behind our horses? Do you work with them in the barn? Have you been to the farm? Can you name the retirees who live there?

      Tell me what my horse does when he’s worried. How about when he’s irritated? When he wants something. What does he like to eat? Where does he like to be scratched?

      You seem to be an expert on all things carriage horse, so please, enlighten me to which horses prefer wet grain over dry. How about their feet? Which ones are most comfortable with toe clips vs. side clips? Who has sensitivity issues with fly spray?

      I’ve had enough of you acting and writing as if you “know” our horses better than we do. You don’t want to compare resumes, that’s fine with me. But don’t expect me to respect the drivel you spout when you have absolutely ZERO credentials to offer in support of your words.

      Respect is earned not given. Until you provide one shred of evidence to make me believe you have a leg to stand on when discussing our horses, I will disregard your plaints as the pitiful mewling of someone with nothing better to do than pass judgement on things that aren’t any of your concern.

      1. All animals who can not speak for themselves are my concern. Just because you “own” your horse does not give you the right to be cruel to them and put them in danger solely for your own greed.

        My experience? I have shared my life with horses. I’m in the animal care industry and know more about animals then you will ever know or even care to know… because it’s more than apparent that you don’t.

        I would never sit behind your horses or any horse because there is no way that I would ever subject a horse to the torture that you seem to think is your birthright to inflict.

        If it’s so great then why don’t you do it and see how you like it. Though, you can take a break when you want one and eat and drink when you want to so, its really not the same… but close.

        And what a pathetic attempt to redirect. You speak nothing of how your horses act away from the farm.

        You think nothing of putting your horse in harms way. I know for a fact that your horse does not like to walk among vehicles, breathe in car exhaust for hours, walk and stand on hot asphalt that no one could walk on barefoot, be in pain or go lame from constantly standing and walking on hard, unyielding roads, and be subjected to loud noises that scare them and sometimes cause them to panic and bolt. That is not just your horses… that is any horse. For you to inanely make this out to be just about your horses is why you have no clue as to the suffering all carriage horses go through everyday they are forced to work to make you money.

        Find another line of work. Anything that does not include a living breathing animal who deserves things you will never be able to provide… comfort, a safe haven, and unconditional love. I would add empathy and compassion but you have proven these adjectives to be profoundly absent from your personal lexicon.

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