Three-week mail ban after bite on postman

Horncliffe Road, South Shore, Blackpool
Horncliffe Road, South Shore, Blackpool
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ROYAL Mail bosses have been accused of being heavy handed for banning deliveries in a Blackpool street after a postman was mauled by a dog.

Residents in part of Horncliffe Road, South Shore, have been told deliveries have been suspended indefinitely – and they are now worried they could be missing vital letters and appointments.

Deliveries will only resume when the owner of the dog confirms the animal is being kept secure, the Royal Mail said.

For the past three weeks, residents have had to travel into Blackpool to the sorting office in Abingdon Street to collect their letters.

And it is feared people could be missing out on important correspondence, including hospital appointments.

Resident Keith Wilson, 70, told The Gazette: “I think it is terrible a postman has been attacked, but we’re really struggling to receive our mail.

“I can’t drive at the moment so I have to go down on the bus to the sorting office every few days.

“My wife is disabled, and gets lots of doctors appointments by letter and we’re scared she’ll miss one.

“Why don’t they at least leave our mail at Highfield Road Post Office so we can collect it there, or bring a van to the street which we can get it from?”

Other residents, who asked not to be named, said Royal Mail had refused to tell them when deliveries might be resumed.

One added: “Myself along with around 30 other houses have now not received any mail for the last three weeks.

“We were not informed of the suspension of mail by the post office and only found out by someone contacting the sorting office.

“So for the last three weeks we have had to travel into Blackpool to collect our mail which for anyone working, can be difficult to fit in.

“Apparently, no mail can be delivered to our part of the street until a full health and safety report has been completed.

“Surely the simple solution would be to have suspended delivery to the house where the dog which carried out the attack is kept.

“Why punish a whole street for the sake of one house?”

Another resident added: “People might be missing hospital appointments and other important appointments such as job interviews.”

Royal Mail confirmed it had suspended deliveries but said it had to put the safety of staff first.

Spokesman Marie Gray added: “Following an incident where a postman was attacked by a dog and received serious bite wounds, as a last resort Royal Mail suspended deliveries to a number of addresses in Horncliffe Road.

“Royal Mail takes very seriously the safety of its employees, particularly our frontline staff who deliver the mail.

“Unfortunately, dog attacks are a hazard faced by our postmen and women every working day and our first priority as an employer is to ensure the welfare and safety of our people who provide a valuable service to our customers.

“Royal Mail seeks the co-operation of our customers and we encourage the public to take responsibility for keeping their pets under control. We apologise for any inconvenience caused to customers.

“As soon as the dog owner can confirm the dog will be secured when the postman or woman calls we will be able to resume deliveries to the area.

“We are working with the owner to resolve this situation as soon as possible.”

She added it was not possible to arrange for mail to be collected from a nearby post office because Royal Mail and the Post Office are separate companies.