Lincoln’s local on-line newspaper The Lincolnite this week reported a sharp increase in dog attacks in Lincolnshire in the last year.
37% more postmen and women have been injured, making Lincolnshire a “hot-spot” for dog attacks.
In the last year, there have been 2484 reported dog attacks on postmen and women, approximately 7 a day, a general rise of 9%. Most seem to happen at the front door or in the garden, often whilst actually posting the mail through letterboxes.
What the public might not realise is that not only could this lead to a claim for compensation against them from the injured postmen and women, but they could also face criminal prosecution for failing to control their dogs, with prison sentences, fines and bans all a possibility, but also the worst outcome in that beloved pets can be ordered to be put down.
Royal Mail advises people to make sure that, whenever a postman or woman calls at home to deliver mail, dogs are secured in a safe place away from the door or postbox. Householders can also put wire boxes behind letterboxes so that the dog’s teeth cannot come into contact with fingers, or put up postboxes away from the house-but still in a secure position for protection of the mail.
Do not leave dogs loose in open gardens or yards. If they are, make sure there is a clear notice that dogs are loose and provide a doorbell or similar at gates so that the postman or woman can attract your attention to deliver mail safely without having to enter. Never leave dogs loose or tied up if you are not there.
If postmen and women deem it unsafe, they can refuse to deliver mail.
The same precautions apply to delivery drivers for on-line purchases and the like.