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New Rules For Horse Carriage Operators In Wilmington

Vince Winkel
Horse-drawn carriages have new rules, after the city council passed new regulations.

The Wilmington City Council has passed new regulations for horse-drawn carriages and their owners. By a unanimous vote last night, the council approved new rules on where tours can go, the health of the horses, and who can operate the tours.  PETA, meanwhile, is opposed to the use of horses for such businesses.

The new regulations mean that carriages must remain below Eighth Street in the downtown area, and that no horses can be in operation when it is 95 degrees or hotter.

(Scroll down for a statement from PETA)

It also states that local medallion holders must operate at least three times a week, and carriage companies must install safety equipment on the carriages and train operators.

City Council member Paul Lawler.

“The ordinance sets a good safety standard. It sets standards for protecting the public, standards for protecting the horses, and gives us a clear path forward for anybody who wants to enter that business.”

In addition, there is a new policy for medallions. Specifically the use of temporary medallions. This allows out-of-town carriages to come in and do special events in Wilmington.

The new regulations offer six single-day temporary operating medallions a month.

After the City Council decision, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) released a statement regarding Wilmington City's New Horse-Drawn Carriage Rules

Below is a statement from PETA Executive Vice President Tracy Reiman in response to the Wilmington City Council's new horse-drawn carriage regulations, which are reportedly modeled off those in Charleston, South Carolina:

“The standards put in place are the bare minimum required to prevent the most common and egregious forms of suffering endured by horses used for carriage rides, but forcing these animals to pull tourists in carriages through chaotic city streets is inherently dangerous and cruel. Numerous recent incidents in Charleston, South Carolina—which has similar minimum standards—including one in which a horse took off running over a curb and crashed into a parked car, prove that the only true way to protect these skittish animals is with an outright ban on these archaic tourist traps.”

PETA's motto reads, in part, that "animals are not ours to use for entertainment." For more information, please visit PETA.org.