Slightly Off Topic but pertaining to the 1812 GT
- Gentlemen of the Crown and US Forces,
Sirs, I have recently been alerted to the concerns of Crown
Forces units in regards to insurance coverage and horses.
Unfortunately, I do not have a definitive answer as to how to handle
this particular problem, but I do see a possible loophole. I do
however, have an answer to the issue of whether or not individual
horse owners must provide insurance for their mounts to participate
at the 2008, 1812 Grand Tactical.
At this point individual horse owners will be covered under
the same rulings that cover any other volunteer (Crown or US Forces)
with Jefferson Patterson Park & Museum provided the horse owner is
acting under the scope of their duties as a volunteer and is not
acting in a malicious or negligent manner. I have contacted the park
and confirmed this with them and have been assured that as long as
horse owners act within these guidelines they are covered and thus
are not required to provide any extra coverage. It seems that with
this coverage, the issue of whether or not existing insurance covers
one regarding horse issues is a moot point, all volunteers are
covered with the above caveats.
Regarding Maryland laws and horse owners, I contacted the
Maryland Horse Council and it was explained to me that Maryland is a
Contributory Negligence state. In layman's terms this means that if
the individual horse owners have signs posted around the picket line
for example, that warn the public of the danger associated with
horses and picket lines and a visitor ignores the sign and is injured
or harmed then they are responsible for their accident and not the
horse owner. In keeping with this line of thinking I have already
worked out the issue of signage and will be taking care of that upon
arrival at the Grand Tactical, but I would encourage all horse owners
and or riders to be wary of this and keep a watchful eye on not only
the picket lines but mounted activities as well. I will say that I
was told by the Maryland Horse Council that even though the law reads
as explained above there are rare cases where individuals do sue or
try to sue horse owners, just so that is clear.
I hope this sheds some light on the issue of insurance and
private horse owner's participation at the 2008, 1812 Grand Tactical.
If you have any basic questions feel free to contact me but please be
aware that I am not a lawyer and as such am not qualified to get into
a debate over the laws in question nor do I have an unlimited amount
of time on my hands to visit about this situation. Hopefully all can
come to an agreement on how to deal with this issue and I sincerely
look forward to seeing you all in September at the GT!
ADC to Col. Abolt