By Isobel Frodsham and Kate Ferguson

A shopkeeper has told how two teenagers raced into his East London off licence and screamed "We've got acid on us!" as their skin was "peeling off".

The man, who has asked not to be named, recalled the terrifying incident where two men were targeted with a "noxious substance", which a police officer described as "bleach", in Roman Road, Bethnal Green, at around 7pm this evening (UK time).

The attack comes after five people were left injured after having acid thrown in their faces in North and East London on July 13. Another person was injured in connection with the incident.


The shopkeeper told the Mail Online: "They were two Bengali boys who came into the shop. They had acid on their face and they were burning - their skin was peeling off.

"I just gave them water, they were shouting and I gave them water and they were washing their faces.

"They said: 'We have got acid on us, we have got acid on us.'

"They were pouring the water over themselves in the shop, and it had got into their clothes. One of them was pouring it down his trousers.

"I was really scared. They were crying and saying: 'Put the water on me'.

"I've never seen anything like this before. It's really scary.

"I think the boys had been attacked elsewhere and then got in their car and drove here to get water. Their car was outside.

"Their face and their legs were all burnt. One of them was saying: 'Put the water in my jeans'.


Witnesses said a blue tarpaulin has been erected to shield the victims from the public.

Four fire engines, police and paramedics are at the scene, which was cordoned off.

Footage posted online by Chris Lennon shows a topless man pouring water on to his face as he is surrounded by five paramedics as a policeman watches on.

Another man is seen sitting on the pavement as he has his blood pressure taken by the medics.

A spokesperson for the Metropolitan Police said: "Police in Tower Hamlets are dealing with a suspected noxious substance attack on two males in Roman Road, E2.

"Officers were flagged down in the area at 7pm on Tuesday, 25 July by the two males who are believed to be aged in their late teens.

"London Ambulance Service attended the scene.

"Both have been taken to an east London hospital for treatment after an unknown liquid was thrown at them. Their injuries are not life threatening.

"No arrests have been made. Enquiries are ongoing."

This is an image made available by Sarah Cobbold of the scene of an acid attack in London on July 13, 2017. There were five linked acid attacks by men on mopeds.
This is an image made available by Sarah Cobbold of the scene of an acid attack in London on July 13, 2017. There were five linked acid attacks by men on mopeds.

Earlier this month, Jabed Hussain, an UberEats driver, a Deliveroo driver, and four other moped drivers were left injured after they had a corrosive liquid sprayed directly into their faces as they waited at traffic lights in East and North London during a 72-minute rampage this month.

A 16-year-old boy has been accused of 13 separate offences in connection with the alleged spree. He denies the charges.

Another high-profile incident saw 20 people injured by acid spray in a London nightclub in March.

The acid incidents are known as "face melters" after convicted acid attackers Billy and Geoffrey Midmore threw acid on 37-year-old mother-of-six Carla Whitlock.

During the trial, Kerry Maylin, prosecuting, told the Southampton Crown Court that Midmore had sent a photograph the acid on WhatsApp to an acquaintance with the words: "This is one face melter".

It was announced yesterday that police are now being provided with acid response kits to tackle the escalating scourge of violence.

West Midlands Police said that they are issuing guidelines for dealing with corrosive liquids in accordance with national police policy and 1000 acid relief kits were given to Met Office police officers.

Five litre bottles of water are now to be stocked in emergency patrol cars across the the capital to provide vital and immediate treatment on the scene.