A spooked carriage horse took a passenger on a haywire ride through downtown Victoria Wednesday afternoon.
The horse-drawn carriage was making its way westbound on Fisgard Street through Chinatown around 2:15 p.m. when a tour bus bumped the steed, sending it into a frenzy.
“All I heard was the scream of the woman and then we saw the carriage barrel by,” said Nick Chambers, employee at Bean Around the World in Chinatown.
“A woman was in the back seat just holding on for dear life.”
Victoria police said the horse bucked, throwing the driver and one passenger off the carriage. The other passenger, thought to be in her 50’s, was unable to escape before the horse took off in a gallop.
Robert Dykstra watched through the windows of Modern Living as the panicked horse careened onto Store Street.
“Cars screeched to a halt and the horse turned and we thought the carriage was going to flip,” he said.
Dykstra lost sight of the horse and carriage as it cut through traffic at Pandora Avenue.
“I thought for sure that the horse would get hit there,” he said.
Courtney Latta was seating customers on the Darcy’s Pub patio as the horse made its way down Wharf Street moments later.
“We realized that there wasn’t a driver onboard, and (the passenger) basically completely bailed at the light (at Fort Street) and landed on the curb,” Latta said.
The woman lay on her back until an ambulance arrived, said Latta, but she eventually walked away from the incident.
Police confirmed the injuries of the driver and both passengers did not appear serious.
A spokesperson for the carriage operator, Capital City Tally Ho, could not immediately be reached for comment.