Pickup truck collides with Amish horse-drawn buggy in P.E.I., truck driver charged
A teenage driver has been charged for not properly clearing his windshield after a pickup truck collided with an Amish horse-drawn carriage in Prince Edward Island.
The accident happened at around 7:30 a.m. March 20 on Route 22 in New Perth, P.E.I.
RCMP say the pickup struck the rear of the southbound carriage. The carriage was “extensively damaged” and the horse had to be treated by a local veterinarian who came to the scene.
“The horse sustained moderate injuries. Both drivers were shaken, but uninjured,” police said in a news release.
The 17-year-old pickup truck driver was charged under the Highway Traffic Act.
RCMP say speed, alcohol and drugs were not contributing factors in the crash, but that they need to remind drivers to fully clear all windows of snow, ice and frost before heading out on the roads.
“Driving conditions, slow-moving vehicles and special circumstances that require your full attention are frequent and require your undivided attention to keep us all safe,” RCMP note.
Beginning in 2016, about two dozen Amish families have moved to P.E.I. from Ontario in search of more fertile and more affordable properties.
WATCH: Amish influx in Prince Edward Island
The Amish do not use electricity, they wear plain clothing and they speak an old German dialect.
The families arranged for government exemptions to build buildings without plumbing, get government identification without pictures and provide alternative education for their children.
In preparation, the province put up road signs to remind drivers to be careful of slow-moving carriages.
RCMP Const. Robert Honkoop told the Canadian Press that there have been two or three accidents involving horse and buggies in Kings County since the Amish began arriving.
“It’s an ongoing concern for us. They have a right to the road as well,” Honkoop said.
He has seen aggressive driving from impatient drivers — honking and making inappropriate passes.
“Modern day-driving – everybody seems to be in a rush to get somewhere. So it clearly presents as an issue,” he said.
— With a file from the Canadian Press
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