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    NO DANGER TO PUBLIC ON RACECOURSE INCIDENT SITE

    Disturbed underground power cable likely cause of racehorse deaths

    Newbury Racecourse and Southern Electric Power distribution are undertaking an investigation following the death of two horses. Four horse were affected altogether. Two of the horses that collapsed died in the parade ring.

    Newbury joint-managing director Stephen Higgins said:

    “We’ve looked at drawings that are 40 years old and established that before the 1992 grandstand was constructed there was a power cable potentially in that location. Routine maintenance was carried out earlier in the week which we do before every race meeting.

    Whether or not that’s disturbed something in the ground that has caused this catastrophic incident to occur to those horses we’re not sure yet and it would be speculation to guess but that looks like a distinct possibility.

    It seems to be possible that the two horses that unfortunately died had steel shoes on and the two that were okay had aluminium plates on so there’s a distinct possibility that the conductivity of the electricity has affected the horses but not the humans working with them.”

    Stuart Hogarth, Operations Director for Southern Electric Power Distribution commented:

    “Following yesterday’s unprecedented event, a full investigation is already underway. A section of electricity cable has been removed from the paddock area for further detailed inspection. 

    Our initial on-site investigations confirm there was no danger to the public.”

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