Postal Workers And Dog Attacks
Every job has its drawbacks—and one of the biggies for postal workers is doubtlessly the many dog interactions that have the potential for harm. If you work for the U.S. Postal Service—or for any delivery service, for that matter, chances are you’ve come across a teeth-baring, snarling animal that, to someone else, is just the family pet. Whether protecting their property or just plain vicious, dog attacks are frightening, and can have long term physical, mental and emotional consequences. What recourse do you have following such an altercation? An experienced local personal injury attorney can help you moving forward.
Of the thousands of dog bites that occur involving postal workers each year, dog owners often state that their dogs are not biters—but the course of events proves owners to be dangerously wrong. Because family pets can be unpredictable if they perceive a threat, it is important that owners keep their animals behind closed doors, on a leash, or behind a fence in order to protect mail carriers and other delivery personnel. Failure to do so could result in horrendous outcomes for everyone involved.
Under Florida law, dog owners are liable for damages when their pets injure someone, whether or not the dog had a history of biting. Penalties could be greater, however, if the dog has formerly had problems with aggression and has been classified as a dangerous dog. Owners who are found to be negligent can be sued for medical costs, lost wages, and both physical and mental injuries. The animal, in some cases, must be put down.
Tips to Avoid Dog Attacks
No one wants to have to go through a terrifying interaction with a dog or to endure the aftermath of an attack. Mail-carriers and others who deliver packages would do well to follow a few simple common-sense rules in order to minimize the chances of an altercation with a dog:
- Avoid startling any dog;
- Make and maintain eye-contact with dogs;
- However friendly a dog appears, never assume you won’t be bitten;
- When entering a yard or fenced area, make some noise to alert the animal to your presence;
- Don’t every try to pet or give snacks to a dog you don’t know;
- Place a foot against any doors that swing outward in case you need to shut it quickly.
In the Event of an Attack
If, despite best efforts, a dog does attack, avoid running. Instead, stay in place and try to put something between you and the dog, such as the mail bag. If necessary, don’t hesitate to use dog repellant spray to protect yourself.
In the Aftermath
The effects of a dog attack can last for a very long time. If you or a loved one is a postal worker, delivery worker, or just an unfortunate neighbor or pedestrian and are in the process of healing after a devastating attack, the experienced Kissimmee dog bite attorneys at the office of Salazar & Kelly Law Group, P.A. can help. To discuss your situation, schedule a confidential consultation today.