The UK is now one of the worst places in the world for acid attacks and corrosive substance crime. This heinous and cowardly act has been on the rise over the last 7 years. It will surprise few to learn that London is now the acid attack capital of the world. Yet another form of violent crime to spiral out of control under Sadiq Khan.
Our laws on the sale of corrosive substances need to see some significant changes. We do not currently have good enough legislation in place to address this issue.
In other parts of the world, most of the attacks are on women. In London and other parts of the UK, these attacks are on men for the most part. The reason for this is the rising levels of gang violence. London now sees well over 50% of all corrosive substance attacks in the UK.
Acid Attacks Aim To Disfigure The Victim
In some ways, this crime is as bad as the knife crime epidemic we now face. The intention is clear, to disfigure the victim for life. The laws have seen some change to hand out longer sentences. Attacking someone with acid is no longer up to five years in jail. In the event of a fatality, this crime can now carry up to life in prison.
In 2014, there were fewer than 200 attacks in the UK. This figure over doubled to 431 in 2016. 2017 saw yet another increase before a small decline in 2018.
It’s important that we all learn what we can do in the event of an acid attack. If we respond quick enough, there is a good chance of reducing the dis-figuration of a victim.
How To Treat A Victim Of An Acid Attack?
The most important first step is to douse the victim with running water. It’s important to make sure the water is clean to avoid a severe infection.
The water dilutes the acid so it’s a good idea to keep applying ample clean water. This process can take up to 45 minutes before the pain of a victim begins to subside.
Any clothing or jewellery that has come into contact with the acid should be removed.
Applying a sterilised gauze can help prevent contamination and infection. If you have this to hand then it should be applied loosely to the affected area. The video at the top of this page provides more information about what to do in the event on an acid attack.