Trailer Safety Checklist

By Janis Blackwell

As the season arrives to gear up for participation in your equine event of choice, one thing remains a constant for all horse owners. That constant is our responsibility to insure the safety of our horses by being diligent to maintain the integrity of the trailers in which we haul them. There are a number of things that can be dangerous both inside and outside of your trailer. Whether you traveled all winter long or whether your trailer sat unused or was used very little through the cold weather months, at least once a year your trailer is due a thorough going over. So here we go with a checklist that will help you insure a happy and safe trip for you and your equine partner.

  1. A sound floor is absolutely imperative. Whether your floor is aluminum, steel or wood, it should be cleaned regularly after use to preserve it. Urine and manure will erode and weaken all types of floors. Even rubber mats will not prevent erosion of your floor. (Maintenance tip: remove mats and wash aluminum floors often to prevent erosion.)
  2. Especially check wooden floors for rotten boards. Immediately replace questionable flooring before hauling. (Maintenance tip: For wood, remove mats and wash out manure and debris. Coat wooden floor in a cheap motor oil. Allow to sit in hot summer weather until the oil soaks in. Be careful—floor will be slippery until oil cures into the wood. This treatment yearly will preserve a wooden floor for much longer than normal as it repels urine and protects the wood).

For more information, pick up the latest issue of OKFR!