The Salt Lake City Council is revisiting the topic of changing its horse-drawn carriage regulations to protect the safety of horses, pedestrians and drivers downtown. About 50 people attended a public hearing on the issue last night.
The conversation began in August last year, when a carriage horse named Jerry collapsed on a Salt Lake City street. His death prompted residents and animal activists to call for better regulation of the industry. Currently only one business called Carriage for Hire operates in Salt Lake.
People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals filed a complaint with Salt Lake County Animal Services on Tuesday calling for an investigation into embattled horse-drawn carriage company Carriage for Hire. PETA says Salt Lake City should revoke the company’s license for failing to report a number of accidents involving horse carriages. But, improper reporting may not be enough to force horse carriages off the streets. Jeremy Beckham is a research project manager at PETA who lives in Salt Lake City.
The Salt Lake City Council will not ban horse-drawn carriage rides downtown. Nor do they have plans to tighten restrictions on the business any time soon. Last month, when a horse named Jerry collapsed downtown and later died, animal rights groups and some Salt Lake City residents urged the council to limit the use of carriages. Salt Lake City Councilman Charlie Luke brought an ordinance proposal to the council Tuesday night that would have created a strict route for carriages and put a cap on the number of hours horses could work among other regulations.