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The annual invasion of central Ireland is under way. If you are a horse lover, you know the invasion of Ballinasloe has nothing to do with military exercises or insects. It is an invasion of horses, their owners, and those who might want to buy one of the animals or related accessories. It is an invasion of HGV horseboxes and horsebox trailers.

The annual event draws tens of thousands of visitors from across Ireland, the UK, and Europe. Organisers are expecting a minimum of 80,000 visitors by the time the event closes this coming weekend. Horses will be bought and sold alongside all of the relevant equestrian equipment and accessories.

The Ballinasloe Fair is the largest such horse show in Europe and one of its oldest. The Fair dates back to the 18th century, a time at which horse-trading was a lot more vital to the Irish economy than it is today. Modern editions of the Fair coincide with an autumn festival that can draw as many as 100,000 additional participants.

With all of those visitors and their animals, local officials are encouraging horsebox operators to make sure their vehicles are in safe working condition before venturing to the show. Furthermore, operators should be very familiar with the basic safety practices associated with operating an HGV horsebox or horsebox trailer.

Among the biggest concerns with these vehicles are tyres. Unfortunately, owners tend to forget about tyres under the false notion that these do not need regular attention. Nevertheless, they do. Horseboxes and horsebox trailers carry a tremendous amount of weight, which, in turn, puts a lot of stress on tyres. Moreover, when these vehicles are not used regularly, tyres are prone to significant air loss and dry rot.

Tyre pressure and tread should be checked prior to every journey. If an operator suspects even the most minor of problems with tyres, these should be taken care of before hitting the road. Practising good tyre safety can reduce the number of accidents involving horseboxes and horsebox trailers.

Horsebox Training

The average horse owner enjoying equestrian pursuits as a hobby will not need a special licence for a tow vehicle and horsebox trailer. HGV horseboxes and trailer/towing vehicle combinations that exceed a certain weight limit are another story. Check the HGV.UK website or contact us for more information about licence details. If you do need an enhanced licence, the HGV Training Centre can provide the instruction you need to prepare you for your practical skills test.

We teach students how to safely operate HGV horseboxes and horsebox trailers, both in traffic and on equestrian grounds. Make no mistake; safety is paramount for both drivers and their animals. Even if you do not need an enhanced licence for your vehicle, we recommend regular training on an annual basis. New classes are forming at our facilities around the UK, so contact us right away to sign up for your training.

Sources:

Irish Times – https://www.irishtimes.com/news/social-affairs/ballinasloe-horse-fair-expected-to-draw-80-000-visitors-1.1953902

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