DISTURBING video shows 20 terrified horses running on the M25 – shortly before one of them was hit and killed by a lorry.
The horses are seen veering towards the central reservation in a desperate bid to escape traffic on the motorway near the Dartford Crossing.
Police closed the Kent-bound section of the road for about an hour at 4am today but not before one of the animals was fatally injured.
The horses were spotted and filmed by Gordon Smith who posted the video to the Facebook page ‘Kent Traffic and Travel’ in the early hours of this morning.
He posted: “Beware, horses loose on the M25 Kent bound just before the Dartford Crossing. Authorities have been contacted.”
The video shows the herd of horses trotting along the M25 in the dark as they are seen holding up cars and lorries.
Traffic which usually travels at 50mph on this section of the motorway were nearly brought to a halt as the herd ran across the road passing through all the lanes on the motorway.
The frightened horses stick close together as the traffic creeps closer.
Gordon and his colleague continue to drive slowly as the horses begin to bunch into the right hand side of the road.
However, just as Gordon and his colleague begin to drive passed the horses they start to run out on the road once more.
Gordon appears to say “be careful” as they slowly make their way around the herd.
Essex Roads Policing Unit – South tweeted this morning saying: “Thankyou for your patience whilst we, @HighwaysEAST and @GRAYS_LPT dealt with loose horses on the #M25.
“Sadly one horse died after hitting a HGV before we could shut the road, a lane is closed whilst we arrange removal so expect delays J30 > DRC @EPRoadsPolicing @EssexPoliceUK.”
One person asked Essex Roads Policing Unit – South about the well-being of the driver, to which they replied: “Fine thanks, low speed and no damage to the truck or injury to him (not nice to be involved with but not his fault though).”
The video has left many in the comments saddened by the news of the dead horse.
Marie Dempster said: “How awful, my heart was in my mouth every time they went towards central reservation which they could easily jump horrible to hear one died and the poor HGV driver that hit it all easily preventable.”
Nicky Bennett added: “They look petrified.”
Gloria Woolley wrote: “Poor things must’ve off been so scared!”
A number of viewers speculated that the horses could belong to travellers although there is presently no evidence of that.
Alan Reed claimed: “Travellers again, no doubt.”