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Federal Legislation to Ban Doubles
The EPN is opposing this bill due to a lack of criminal
Lack of Criminal Penalties
Without criminal penalties there will be
no enforcement because law enforcement officers cannot
enforce civil penalties. Citizens will not be able
to call 911 to report a violation when they observe
a double deck trailer transporting horses. In the states
with laws banning doubles, the public can call 911
to report a violation and law enforcement can respond
and make the required motor vehicle stop necessary
to collect the evidence necessary to arrest and successfully
prosecute the violation in court.
Threat of Fines
The "threat of $30,000 in fines is not a deterrent. The
death penalty is not a deterrent to murder. The facts
prove that high fines are not a deterrent. One only
needs to look at the record in New York and Pennsylvania.
In 1994 a truck owned by Frank Carper was stopped and
the driver, his son, David Carper was successfully
prosecuted in the Horse Popcicle Case resulting
in $11,000 in fines, which to this day remain unpaid.
Carper stopped running the Northway to Canada, but
even though he stood at the auction ring rail week
in and week out with Donald Nickerson of Nickerson
Livestock and Arlow Kiehl, his fine did nothing to
deter Nickerson Livestock or Arlow Kiehl from transporting
at least one load of horses a week through New York
into Canada in violation of the NY Horse Transport
Law of 1980.
Nickerson Livestock and Arlow
Kiehl were arrested and
prosecuted under NY Law several times and it was not
until it was proven to them that the Court would impose
the fines and NY closed the loophole in the law that
allowed Kiehl to avoid arrest and enter into plea
If there is an accident, law enforcement will be called
to the scene due to the accident. The owner of the
tractor trailer, the driver, the number of horses,
the point of origin and destination, and other load
information will be documented by law enforcement allowing
them to provide the U.S. Attorney General's Office
with the evidence of the violations. The evidence will
be collected by law enforcement personnel trained in
the Rules of Evidence and the importance and necessity
of maintaining the Chain of Evidence for court. If
the evidence is not collected, maintained, and introduced
according to these rules, the defense will be able
to successfully move to have the evidence thrown out.
HR 6278 IH
H. R. 6278
To amend title 49, United States Code, to prohibit the transportation
of horses in interstate transportation in a motor vehicle containing
2 or more levels stacked on top of one another.
IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
June 17, 2008
Mr. KIRK (for himself, Mr. COHEN, Mr. REICHERT, Mr.
WHITFIELD of Kentucky, Mr. GONZALEZ, Mr. RAHALL, Mr.
KUCINICH, Mr. SERRANO, Mr. FOSTER, Mr. SHAYS, Mr. JONES
of North Carolina, and Mr. MOORE of Kansas) introduced
the following bill; which was referred to the Committee
on Transportation and Infrastructure
To amend title 49, United States Code, to prohibit
the transportation of horses in interstate transportation
in a motor vehicle containing 2 or more levels stacked
on top of one another.
Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives
of the United States of America in Congress assembled,
SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.
This Act may be cited as the `Horse Transportation
Safety Act of 2008'.
SEC. 2. TRANSPORTATION OF HORSES.
(a) In General- Chapter 805 of title 49, United States
Code, is amended by adding at the end the following:
`Sec. 80505. Transportation of horses
`(a) Prohibition- No person may transport, or cause
to be transported, a horse from a place in a State,
the District of Columbia, or a territory or possession
of the United States through or to a place in another
State, the District of Columbia, or a territory or
possession of the United States in a motor vehicle
containing 2 or more levels stacked on top of one
`(b) Civil Penalty- A person that knowingly violates
this section is liable to the United States Government
for a civil penalty of at least $100 but not more
than $500 for each violation. A separate violation
occurs under this section for each horse that is
transported, or caused to be transported, in violation
of this section. On learning of a violation, the
Attorney General shall bring a civil action to collect
the penalty in the district court of the United States
for the judicial district in which the violation
occurred or the defendant resides or does business.
`(c) Motor Vehicle Defined- In this section, the term
`motor vehicle' means a vehicle driven or drawn by
mechanical power and manufactured primarily for use
on public highways, but does not include a vehicle
operated exclusively on a rail or rails.
`(d) Relationship to Other Laws- The penalty provided
under this section shall be in addition to a penalty
or remedy available under any other law or common
(b) Conforming Amendment- The analysis for such chapter
is amended by adding at the end the following:
`80505. Transportation of horses.'.
Double Deck Trailer Facts
- Double deck trailers are not
designed, safety tested, or manufactured for horses,
nor are they marketed to the horse industry; Industry
standard for the commercial transport of horses is
8 feet in similar sized trailers.
- Doubles are used by low end horse dealers, rodeo
stock contractors, and “killer buyers”
- Double deck trailers have been banned outright
in several leading horse states due to injuries caused to the horses
transported – PA (2001), NY (1980), MA, and regulated in: CT
(1976), VA(1987),VT (1989), MN.(1996), MD (2006)
- Note-These states are examples
of either poorly drafted legislation, legislation
compromised with performance based language offered
by the opposition. Enforcement of these laws requires
testimony from experts, measurements taken by law
enforcement. The result is the regulation and legitimization
of doubles. The hostile amendment offered by the
IL Farm Bureau would have legalized and legitimized
doubles for horses in IL and at the same time weakened
other state horse transport laws.
- Double deck trailers banned by the USDA for horses
transported to slaughter in 2007 due to the results of studies documenting
that double deck trailers, even if modified could not be made safe
and humane for horses. AZ and CA also ban their use for transport to
- Double deck trailers can have ceiling heights as
low as 5’7”. Industry standard is 7’.
- Bottom deck has 3” I Beams every 12” on
center to support the top deck
- Steep and narrow ramps with metal floors cause
the horses to slip and fall, cause injuries to the horses hips.
- Horses are forced to jump down into a narrow opening
leading to the bottom deck
- Due to the low ceiling heights horses cannot raise
and lower their heads and necks for balance. Horses routinely throw
their heads and rear, unlike cattle, hogs, goats or sheep which theses
trailers are designed for.
- Horses suffer head and back injuries due to the
low ceiling height, the 3” I beams, and overhead ramp storage.
- Horses suffer injuries to their hips and sides
due to the narrow doorways.
is incumbent for advocacy groups all over the nation
to be vigilant regarding any piece
of equine legislation which could weaken other existing
laws even if in another state".
Cathleen Doyle -HoofPAC, Save The
Horses, CA Equine Council
The slaughter of America's Horses has continued for 40
years because it was hidden and the media kept silent.
The advent of the Internet gave the people opposed
to slaughter a voice. The California Initiative Process
gave the People a voice and in 1998 62% of California
voters "Just Said Neigh" to horse slaughter.
as a whole are given a voice, the Slaughter of America's
Horses will end as Americans overwhelmingly vote to
outlaw the slaughter.
Since 2000 the issue has been handled by animal welfare
organizations unwilling to hire the best professional
lobbyist in Washington D.C. so the slaughter and the
fundraising at the expense of the horses continues.
Anytime one remains silent
it allows the practice in question to continue and
as history shows, anytime attempts are made to silence
people's voices no good comes from it. People need
to find their voices and Speak Up For the Horses.
Silence = Complacency
"People deserve to be informed
and certainly the horses deserve better. No matter
what the situation...be informed."
Cathleen Doyle -HoofPAC,
Save The Horses, CA Equine Council
Download a card and carry in your car.
Help enforce PA, NY, & VT laws banning the use of double deck trailers
to transport any horse,
no matter what its final destination!
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