Three people were hospitalized in London Tuesday following a suspected acid attack in the west end of the city.
Police say the attack, which involved a “noxious substance,” occurred in Westbourne Grover shortly after 2 p.m.
“We were called at 2:10 p.m. today to reports of a noxious substance attack on Westbourne Grove,” a Scotland Yard spokesman said.
The London Fire Brigade, according to U.K. newspaper Daily Express, dispatched 10 firefighters to make sure the area was decontaminated.
A spokeswoman for the London Ambulance Service added that a “hazardous area response team” was also sent to the scene.
“We also dispatched our hazardous area response team,” the spokeswoman said. “We treated three people at the scene and took them to hospital.”
At current, no arrests have been made linked to the attack.
Acid Survivors Trust International, a non-profit organization working to end such attacks worldwide, says the U.K. has one of the highest rates of acid attacks per capita in the world.
London in 2017 saw 465 “corrosive liquid” attacks as compared to 397 the year prior, notes Scotland Yard.
Experts warn the number could even be higher as some victims may refrain from reporting the incidents out of fear.
The mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, called on the government last year to implement a “zero tolerance” policy towards the attacks.
Critics argue that Khan has failed to prioritize the city’s rising violent crime rate.
The U.K. government has been working with retailers in an attempt to find whether certain restrictions can be placed on bleach and other corrosive substances.
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