Out-of-control dogs are making posties’ lives a misery with more than 44 attacks recorded every week.
New figures released by the Royal Mail reveal 2,275 dog attacks took place on postmen and women across the UK in 2017/18, meaning there are over 44 attacks every week in the UK, some leading to a permanent and disabling injury.
In the Huddersfield area around six postmen and women were attacked by dogs from April 2017 to April 2018, down 54% on the previous year.
Last year the Examiner told how a postman suffered life-changing injuries after a dog called Bruiser escaped from a garden and savaged him as he delivered mail in a Meltham street.
Jack Park-Paul held his post in front of him in a desperate bid to fend off the Staffordshire Bull Terrier as he leapt over a gate and headed straight towards him in Golcar Brow Road on July 22, 2016.
Magistrates in Huddersfield later ordered the dog to be destroyed and Adam Shaw, of Copley Avenue in Meltham, was given a nine month community order and told to pay £100 to the victim after admitting having a dog dangerously out of control.
Mr Park-Paul needed plastic surgery to severe arm injuries with the dog biting so hard it only gave up when a nearby resident came to the rescue and hit it with a shovel.
Royal Mail deliveries in the area were suspended for a considerable time in the aftermath of the attack.
While the overall number of UK attacks has reduced in the last year by 8%, in some postcode areas attacks are increasing. In a bid to cut them the Royal Mail is launching its sixth successive Dog Awareness week by appealing to dog owners to ensure they understand the impact of dog attacks on postmen and women who are only doing their job.
The week runs from runs from today Monday, June 25 to Saturday, June 30. Royal Mail’s research also shows that the number of attacks rises during the school holidays and in the summer months when parents and children are at home.
Dr Shaun Davis, Royal Mail Group Global Director of Safety, Health, Wellbeing & Sustainability said: “One attack is still one attack too many.
“Our research continues to show that attacks happen most often in the summer so we are continuing our campaign to appeal to customers to help us cut attacks across the UK. Dog attacks have a devastating effect on our people and on our customers and we hope we can make a further impact in these areas.
The Commercial Workers Union’s National Health and Safety Officer Dave Joyce said: “The failure of some dog owners to control their animals remains a major concern for postal workers and the public.
“The number of attacks, with yearly hospital admissions for dog bites, increased by 76% between 2006 and 2016. Seven postal workers are attacked by dogs every working day of the year which is unacceptable. The idea of Dog Awareness Week is to highlight the problem and the repercussions for dog owners and the victims, many of whom are seriously injured.”