The Security Industry Authority (SIA) are asking licence holders and security businesses to familiarise themselves with the available guidance on responding to acid attacks. This is in response to recent acid attacks against members of the public and a very small number of such attacks against licence holders.
They are asking people to remember the 3 R’s:
- Report the attack: dial 999
- Remove contaminated clothing carefully
- Rinse skin immediately with running water
NHS Choices has also issued more detailed guidance for the public on how to treat acid and chemical burns which is available here. A summary of this information is listed below:
- Call 999 and ask for urgent help.
- Remove the chemical and affected clothing.
- After calling 999, to help prevent severe injuries from a chemical burn; try to carefully remove the chemical and any contaminated clothing and rinse the affected area using as much clean water as possible.
- Try to remove the chemical and contaminated clothing from contact with the skin and eyes, but be very careful not to touch or spread the chemical as this could lead to further injuries to the victim or the person helping them.
- Do not wipe the skin as this may spread contamination.
- If the chemical is dry, brush it off the skin.
- Rinse the affected area continuously with clean water as soon as possible to remove any residual chemical.
- Try to make sure the water can run off of the affected area without pooling on the skin and potentially spreading the chemical to a wider area.
- Only use water – do not rub or wipe the area.
- Stay on the phone until the ambulance arrives and follow any other advice given by the 999 call handler to avoid further injury.