THE red circle in this picture shows a horse's trapped leg.

It had plunged through the floor of its horsebox while it was being transported.

Fortunately, Bromyard fire station's specialist animal rescue team were able to help.

First they had to remove a large section of the vehicle using specialist cutting gear.

A harness was attached around the horse, then the team borrowed from a local farmer a telehandler (a machine used in agriculture that is a cross between a forklift truck and a crane). They were then able to hoist the animal free.

Firefighters from Redditch and vets from Walnut Hill Equine Veterinary Clinic and Corner House Equine Clinic, both of Henley-in-Arden, also helped with the operation.

The horse was heavily sedated for its own safety, and that of his rescuers.

Bromyard firefighters said the animal, which was taken to recover at a vet's before returning home, was lucky not to have been seriously injured.

They said the rescue highlighted the need to regularly check horseboxes or trailer floors for rot beneath the rubber matting, especially older models. It is, though, not clear why the floor gave way in this incident.

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