The days of romantic horse-drawn carriage rides through Central Park could soon be over. Another accident involving a horse has rekindled the debate over banning the popular tourist attraction.
The incident unfolded just after rush our Thursday on busy 8th Avenue near Columbus Circle. The driver of a horse drawn carriage lost control of the animal as he ran wild in traffic. The cab slammed into a nearby car when the horse named Chris bolted near West 57th Street. It eventually flipped and landed on the horse’s hind legs pinning him until good Samaritans could lift the cab.
The driver Frank Luo who owns Manhattan Carriage Company says the horse had been acting strange all morning and that he had to use all his might to control him. No one was seriously injured but the incident is certain to re-ignite the debate over horse drawn carriages operating in the city.
Both candidates for mayor say they want to get rid of them. Democrat Bill de Blasio says he believes horse drawn carriages should be banned even though he has been endorsed by the Teamsters union which represents the drivers. He has concerns about how the animals are treated. Republican Joe Lhota says the carriages should be motorized. He says the smell associated with them is unfortunate.
The driver had been written up by the city just three days before the accident for over charging customers and operating a carriage for more than 12 hours in a 20 hour period.
The horse survived the incident and was not seriously injured.