FIFTY-NINE postal staff were injured by dog attacks while working in St Helens and Newton over the past five years, new figures reveal.
Royal Mail bosses and union chiefs say the statistics demonstrate the dangers faced by postmen and women on a daily basis.
They want tougher legal sanctions introduced against owners who attack posties after an independent investigation found 3,000 were attacked across the UK by dogs the last year. Local figures seen by the St Helens Reporter show efforts to prevents attacks are working, with a dramatic dip in injuries over the past year.
The highest number of attacks took place in 2010/11 when seven posties were attacked in St Helens and nine in Newton-le-Willows.
That figure fell the following year to five in St Helens and just one in Newton.
However, bosses want more done and are pressing for changes to the current legislation.
Donald Brydon, chairman of the Royal Mail Group, said: “Dog attacks cause injuries and terrible trauma to our staff. Nobody should have to endure this and our staff are at an increased risk of such attacks simply because of the job they do.
“We welcome the findings in the independent report, especially the call for an urgent reform of the laws in England and Wales.
“We have also taken on board the comments that Royal Mail should take a more robust approach with customers whose dogs attack postmen and women.”
The local breakdown of attacks is:
2007/08 - six (St Helens); two (Newton)
2008/09 - six (St Helens); five (Newton)
2009/10 - eight (St Helens); seven (Newton)
2010/11 - seven (St Helens); nine (Newton)
2011/12 - five (St Helens); one (Newton)
2012/13 - three (St Helens); one (Newton)