Beware of the dogs ...

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THE Royal Mail is appealing to dog owners to keep their pets under control following a sharp rise in attacks on postmen and women in Fife.

New figures have revealed that 33 postmen and women were attacked by dogs across the KY postcode area between April 2011-2012 - an increase of 74 per cent since 2010.

As a result the Royal Mail and the Communication Workers Union are urging dog owners to work with them, particularly during the school holidays when the number of attacks usually peak, to ensure their employees are protected when delivering mail.

The company has already been trying to combat the problem by spending more than £100,000 on awareness campaigns and equipment to help postmen and women reduce the risk of injury.

One device the Royal Mail has been issuing to workers is ‘posting pegs’ which are used to put letters through the letterbox and protect the fingers of postmen and women.

Unsupervised

Staff face increased danger during school holidays when parents and children are at home with dogs which are sometimes allowed unsupervised in the garden or in the streets without restraints.

Steve Greaves, safety director for Royal Mail in Scotland, said: “Clearly most dogs are not inherently dangerous, but the number of attacks is unacceptably high and our first priority as an employer is to ensure the safety of our people who provide a valuable service to our customers.

“Even just being threatened by an unrestrained pet is a frightening situation for our delivery staff and we would appeal to owners to keep their pets under control.”