A horror five-vehicle smash involving a horse truck on a British motorway has left two people dead, with at least five horses taken to an equine hospital for assessment.
The accident happened on Thursday around 2.15pm on the M11 highway in Essex in the northbound carriageway near Harlow.
Essex police said the smash involved two trucks, one of which was carrying horses, and three cars.
Two people in a car died and the driver and passenger in another car were taken to hospital in Cambridgeshire. A woman has serious internal injuries and was flown by air ambulance and a man was taken by ambulance with a head injury.
Firefighters from Essex Fire and Rescue were called upon to free three people trapped in the cars.
A man has been arrested on suspicion of causing death by dangerous driving and was taken to a police station for questioning.
Police said the accident completely blocked the road and it would remain closed for several hours while the scene was cleared and the crash was investigated.
The horse truck was carrying five horses under the care of racehorse trainer Brian Meehan.
It was reported on Meehan’s website that three intended runners for a Newmarket race meeting were on the truck and had been withdrawn from their intended races.
All the horses were taken to the Newmarket Equine Centre for treatment.
”There were two other horses accompanying our three runners to Newmarket,” Meehan said.
“One was the coloured pony we use to lead some horses down to the start, the other was a horse on his way home.
“Details are still unclear, but they were all taken to the Equine Centre for assessment by the vets, and we do not know the extent of any injuries at the moment.
“It is obviously very upsetting for everyone concerned, but they could not be in a better place to receive the care they need.”
Early local reports suggested up to eight horses could have been on the truck.