BRIDPORT — At about 5 a.m. Friday, Oct. 3, State Police from the New Haven Barracks were called to a report of a motorist who had collided with a dead horse that was lying on VT Route 22A in Bridport. An investigation revealed that Eric Baker, 38 of Whitehall, N.Y., was traveling to work northbound on Route 22A at around 3:30 a.m. when a horse ran into the roadway. Baker told troopers that he thought he had hit a moose and called state police as soon as he had cell service. Before the call was placed, the horse was hit by a second vehicle, driven by Justin Stearns, age 28, of Whiting, Vt. Baker’s 1994 Saab had a broken windshield and Stearns’ 2011 Toyota Corolla sustained front and rear bumper damage and possible under-carriage damage, and the air bags were deployed. Both vehicles were able to be driven from the scene. Neither driver was injured, and both were wearing seatbelts. The sky was overcast and road surface was dry. It is believed that the horse died on impact.
At first, the state police were not able to identify the owner of the brown and blue roan, shoeless gelding, which was wearing a turn-out halter. Later, thanks to help from community members, the horse was identified and the owners were notified.