Nearly 20 dog attacks on Suffolk postal workers in last year

The number of dog attacks on postal workers fell from 41 to 19 in Suffolk, a new report has found.

The number of dog attacks on postal workers fell from 41 to 19 in Suffolk, a new report has found. - Credit: Archant

The number of dog attacks on postal workers in the IP postcode area has halved in a year, new figures reveal. 

A new report from Royal Mail recorded that 19 staff were attacked by dogs between March 2021 and March 2022, compared to 41 cases for the same period in 2020/21.

There was one dog attack in Ipswich, following three attacks in the previous year.

The largest number of dogs attacking postmen in Suffolk last year was noted in Brandon (7 cases).

In Thetford, there were five dog attacks, following six incidents in 2020/21.

Royal Mail also recorded three dog attacks in Bury St Edmunds in the last year, down from four.

Felixstowe had four dog attacks on postmen in 2020 and 2021 and two this year.

Figures revealed by Royal Mail for Suffolk

Dog attacks on postmen in Suffolk, data revealed by Royal Mail - Credit: Archant

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Overall, more than 1,600 postmen and postwomen were attacked by dogs in the UK in 2021 and 2022.

The data shows an average of 32 attacks every week across the UK, with some leading to permanent and disabling injuries. 

The report has been released at the start of the 10th Dog Awareness Week, which runs until July 10. 

Royal Mail is appealing to dog owners to ensure they understand the impact of dog attacks on postmen and take proper measures to ensure their pets pose no threat to postal workers through responsible dog ownership. 

The reduction in dog attacks on postal workers in recent years can be attributed to the contact-free deliveries during the pandemic.

The majority of dog attacks took place at the front door (39%), followed by gardens (30%), driveways and yard attacks.  

8% of the reported attacks in the UK took place on streets or roads. 

Almost 400 postmen and postwomen around the country suffered injuries through the letterbox (23%). 

Philip Graham, Royal Mail interim director of safety, health, wellbeing & sustainability, said: “We are pleased to see a slight decrease in dog attacks on our team this past year. However, as we begin to return to pre-pandemic delivery procedures, we want to ask our customers to continue to be aware of where their pets are when the postman delivers their mail.” 

Dave Joyce, national health & safety officer at the Communication Workers’ Union, said: “The key objectives of Dog Awareness Week are to primarily remind the public to be aware of their legal and moral responsibilities to control their pets and prevent dog attacks on postal workers - and secondly is a message to our postmen and women to be vigilant, keep safe and take no risks.”