Release Of Dog Attack Data ‘Means Issue Remains High On Agenda’

North East Pinpointed As Hotspot For Incidents

16.04.2013

By Rob Dixon

Legal experts who specialise in helping dog bite victims gain justice over their injuries have said that the release of new data in relation to attacks was the latest sign that action is vital to tackle the issue.

Figures obtained by The Journal under the Freedom of Information Act revealed that Wakefield, Middlesbrough and Newcastle top the list of most common locations for dog attacks.

Rates of incidents equalled 35 assaults per 100,000 people in Wakefield, with the two north-eastern locations trailing behind on 34 and 30 respectively. The figures also revealed that a total of 15 dogs were put down and owners charged with offences following attacks in the North East in the past two years alone.

Other areas which were ranked highly in the list included Liverpool, Birmingham and Oxfordshire.

Reports of the new figures have also come just weeks after a 14-year-old girl was killed in a suspected dog attack in Greater Manchester.

David Urpeth, a Partner at Irwin Mitchell and legal expert who acts for dog attack victims, said: “Rarely a week goes by when the issue of dangerous dogs or attacks are in the media spotlight and these figures are a terrible reminder of the number of people affected by such problems every year.

“They are also a clear indication that further work needs to be undertaken to ensure that the public can be better protected from such risks and, where necessary, are able to gain access to funds which will ensure they can gain access to vital rehabilitation and support after an attack.

“The Government is continuing to consult on new measures such as compulsory microchipping and the extension of laws that will ensure owners can be prosecuted over attacks on private property. We remain convinced that the introduction of compulsory insurance and licensing would also ensure anyone injured in a dog attack is able to get the help they need.”

Read more about Irwin Mitchell's expertise in relation to Dog Bite Claims