Road Driving Assessment

This Road Driving Safety Certificate is designed for the recreational driver of the single harness horse and covers the necessary skills and knowledge to:

  1. prepare harness and horse drawn vehicles for use,
  2. harness up a single horse and put-to to a suitable vehicle,
  3. drive on the public highway
  4. care for the horse after use.

These skills and knowledge are assessed via two individual units:

  1. (J/601/7864) Harness up, put-to and drive a Single horse on the public highway
  2. (F/601/7345) Care for a harness horse after use

Assessment is by practical demonstration and oral questioning with a BDS Approved assessor. There is no grading; candidates will either Pass or Fail.  Each unit consists of a number of elements, all of which candidates will be assessed on, and these elements are given below in two tables, one table for each unit.  If you are interested in obtaining your Road Driving Certificate please get in touch with either your AC or the BDS Executive Secretary.

J/601/7864 – Harness up, put-to and drive a Single horse on the public highway               
1 Be able to harness up, put-to and drive a Single horse on the public highway
                1.1 Identify roads suitable for the purpose of driving a Single harness horse and plan a route suitable for the fitness level of the horse
                1.2 Select a vehicle suitable for a Single harness horse
                1.3 Carry out checks to ensure vehicle, harness and horse are fit for use
                1.4 Balance a two-wheeled vehicle correctly for use
                1.5 Harness up the horse and put to the selected Single vehicle, making correct use of assistant(s)
                1.6 Mount and dismount the vehicle correctly and safely
                1.7 Drive the Single horse on the public highway, using the English Coaching style of rein handling
                1.8 Shorten and lengthen reins correctly and appropriately whilst driving
                1.9 Use the driving whip correctly and appropriately
                1.10 Make correct and effective use of voice aids to the horse throughout
                1.11 Communicate with, and make appropriate use of assistant(s)
                1.12 Stand the horse up and drive smoothly away from the halt.
                1.13 Continuously assess and take appropriate actions, to cope with a range of conditions
                1.14 Continuously assess the horse for signs of physical and mental stress whilst driving, and take appropriate action(s) to minimise or eliminate
                1.15 Continuously assess the harness and vehicle for indications of wear, tear or damage whilst driving, and take appropriate action(s)
                1.16 Halt the horse safely and correctly, making use of assistant(s) as appropriate :
                1.17 Drive with consideration to other road users
                1.18 Follow agreed cooling down procedures at the end of the drive as appropriate
                1.19 Return the horse to the taking-out area, take out and unharness
                1.20 Check over and care for the horse following drive
                1.21 Check the vehicle and harness for wear, tear and damage following the drive.
                1.22 Maintain control of the horse at all times
2 Be able to maintain health and safety of self and others and welfare of the horse whilst working, and minimise environmental damage
                2.1 Maintain health and safety of self and others and welfare of the horse whilst working, and minimise environmental damage
3 Follow legislative requirements, codes of practice and any additional requirements
                3.1 Follow current legislative requirements, the Highway Code and other codes of practice, including the BDS Safe Driving Code
4 Know and understand how to harness up, put to and drive a Single horse on the public highway
                4.1 Explain how to identify and assess roads suitable for driving a Single harness horse and how to plan a route suitable for the fitness level of the selected horse
                4.2 Explain the importance of making pre-drive checks on the horse, harness and vehicle
                4.3 Give the correct order of procedure for putting-to and taking out a Single horse, and describe the different roles of the Driver and Assistant(s) whilst putting-to and taking out
                4.4 Describe the dangers of incorrect putting-to and taking out procedures
                4.5 Explain how to adjust various items of harness correctly
                4.6 Explain how to ensure the shafts are the correct length and height from the ground for the relevant horse, and the dangers of failing to ensure the shafts are the correct length, and that they are correctly attached to the vehicle
                4.7 Give reasons for using swingletrees with breastcollar harness
                4.8 Give a range of spares which should be carried when driving on the road, and describe how to use them correctly when necessary
                4.9 Explain how to use the harness and brakes correctly to slow down and stop
                4.10 Explain how to cope with potential risks presented to driving horses and horse drawn vehicles
                4.11 Give a range of safe practices when encountering other road users, and explain safe practices when passing stationary objects.
                4.12 Describe a range of methods to cope safely when
                4.13 Explain the importance of following correct mounting and dismounting procedures
                4.14 Explain the importance of communicating effectively with assistant(s), and give a range of commonly used instructions given when driving on the road
                4.15 Describe the correct use of the whip as an aid when driving on the road, and also how it should not be used
                4.16 Describe correct and effective methods of giving signals to other road users
                4.17 Describe safe procedures for a range of activities

 

F/601/7345 – Care for a harness horse after use
1 Be able to Care for a harness horse after use
                1.1 Remove harness correctly
                1.2 Check horse’s whole body for rubs, sores, injury and report to appropriate person
                1.3 Pick out and check feet and shoes for wear and damage.  Report problems
                1.4 Remove harness and sweat marks, according to instructions
                1.5 Provide water, feed and opportunities for rest and recreation to the horse, according to instructions
2 Be able to use, store and maintain equipment
                2.1 Use horse care equipment correctly; check equipment for wear, tear or damage before use; report damage, and store equipment after use.
3 Be able to maintain health and safety of self and others and welfare of the horse whilst working.
                3.1 Maintain health and safety of others whilst working
4 Know how to care for a harness horse after use
                4.1 Outline why it is important to care for a harness horse after use
                4.2 Outline the importance of checking the horse’s whole body for rubs, sores and injuries after use
                4.3 Explain how to care for rubs, sores and injuries
                4.4 Outline the importance of picking out and checking the horse’s hooves and shoes after use
                4.5 Describe the dangers of allowing a horse to drink large quantities of cold water after strenuous work
                4.6 Outline why it is important to remove harness and sweat marks after working the horse
                4.7 Describe common signs of possible harness sores, and explain what actions to take to prevent and treat harness sores
                4.8 Explain the importance of recreation for the horse following use
5 Understand the reasons for maintaining equipment
                5.1 Explain the importance of maintaining equipment for use
                5.2 Describe the methods of maintaining the range of equipment used