Savage toll of dog attacks on mail workers

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Around 14 postmen and women have been attacked by dogs while trying to deliver mail in the Motherwell postcode area over the past year.

Now Royal Mail has launched a Dog Awareness Week (July 3 to 8) in a bid to highlight the danger and pain suffered by scores of mail workers in the course of a typical year.

The Motherwell figure for dog attacks is down around 18 per cent, year on year, but over the last five years there have been 91 dog attacks in the ML postcode area alone, and around 14,500 across the UK.

A Royal Mail spokesperson said: “On average there are still as many as seven attacks take place each day, some leading to a permanent and disabling injury.

“Most dogs are not inherently dangerous, however even the most placid animal can be prone to attack if it feels its territory is being threatened.

“Royal Mail’s first priority as an employer is to ensure the welfare and safety of our people, who provide a valuable service to our customers across the length and breadth of the UK and in every community.”

Research also shows that the number of attacks rises during the school holidays, when parents and children are at home.

Over the past year nearly three quarters of dog attacks on postal workers have happened at the owner’s front door or in the front garden.

Rob Jenson, Royal Mail operations director said: “Some of these attacks have led to extremely serious and life changing injuries and this is unacceptable.

“While the number of dog attacks on postmen and women has fallen in the last year, the numbers are still far too high.

“Our postmen and women need to be able to deliver the service they provide to communities across the UK, without the risk of injury.

“This is why this campaign is so important. We need to keep raising awareness of this serious issue and ask all dog owners to keep their pets under control and be a responsible dog owner.”