As part of the National Dog Bite Prevention Week, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has released information regarding the top 25 cities for dog attacks to letter carriers. According to a United States Postal Service press release, Los Angeles and San Diego top the list of cities where postal workers are attacked by dogs. In the year 2011, 83 postal workers were attacked in Los Angeles and 68 San Diego postal workers were bitten. Nationwide, 5,577 postal employees were attacked resulting in nearly $1.2 million in medical expenses.
Nationwide Dog Bite Statistics
According to the CDC, approximately 4.7 million Americans are bitten by dogs each year. More than half of those victims are children. In fact, officials say that children are three times more likely to be bitten by a neighborhood dog than adults. The American Society of Plastic Surgeons reported that over 29,000 reconstruction procedures were performed in 2011 as a result of dog bite incidents.
Dog Bite Safety Tips
There are a number of steps we can take to help prevent serious dog bite injuries. First and foremost, never leave a baby or small child alone with a dog. Never run past a dog because it is their instinct to give chase. No one should approach a strange dog or disturb a dog that is sleeping, nursing or eating. Individuals who are charged by a dog should try to get behind something, such as a fence, tree, backpack or bicycle and to remain still. If knocked down by a dog, it is advisable to curl up like a ball while protecting your face.
If You Have Been Injured
If you have been bitten in a dog attack, it may be in your best interests to write down the contact information of the dog owner, seek prompt medical attention, notify the authorities and call an experienced Los Angeles dog bite lawyer. Financial compensation may be available for your medical bills, loss of wages, pain and suffering and other related damages. Under California’s strict liability statute dog owners can be held financially responsible for injuries and damages caused by their pets.