Acid attacks are on the rise in the UK. Many more criminals are having acid as the weapon of choice, it’s easier to obtain, conceal and causes its victims to have fear of disfigurement.
“It takes 2 minutes to put on blush, but only 3 seconds to scar a face”
Reshma Khureshi – Acid attack survivor
What crimes involve acid attacks?
More and more crimes involve the use of acid now. The ones you may have heard usually involve some sort of revenge, whether it be from a broken relationship or the dishonour someone feels. However, the rise comes from acid being used in other crimes also, anything from petty theft to just causing mayhem.
Just think on that, some criminals are using acid just to rob their victims of their phone, money or jewellery. They think nothing of disfiguring, blinding or killing someone just for a few pounds.
How much is your life worth to you?
To a criminal your life is only worth as much as the sum of the items you are carrying. They care very little for what makes you you, for the children you have, for the people that are in your life and care about you. At that moment in time you are the only thing between the criminal and their prize.
Your life doesn’t just have worth to only you but to every person that is in your life, therefore it’s very much worth while taking measures to protect it.
What can you do to prevent it?
First and foremost preventing the attack from happening is much easier and far better than waiting for it to happen.
90% of self-protection is awareness. Think about that statement, it means that simply paying more attention to certain things can up your self-protection enormously.
Many acid attacks come from either a car or a bike. Therefore simply moving back from the edge of the road while waiting for a bus or a taxi can give you time to react if an attack does happen.
If acid is thrown directly from a vehicle, having that extra distance gives you a chance to cover your face with your arms or a bag you may have. Limiting the contact of acid to your face is obviously a primary concern. Burns on arms or hands are not as life damaging as burns to the face or blinding an eye.
As for many other situations, walking the street with earphones in and looking down at a phone isn’t ideal. It takes away 2 of your 5 major senses, or at least hinders those senses.
So the main way you can help yourself is becoming more aware of things around you. The most damaging thing you can say to yourself is “It will never happen to me.”
An upcoming blog will give advise on what to do if an attack has happened.
If you think this information could help someone else I urge you to share it.