By Martin Burns
Contact lenses helped to shield a man who was attacked in his own home by a criminal.
The victim, 61, had answered his door when a man in a balaclava sprayed him in the face with something noxious and chased him upstairs.
But his contact lenses afforded him a degree of protection.
Speaking to the Rochdale Observer, the homeowner said: "He sprayed me in both my eyes, but I was wearing contact lenses so I could still see slightly."
The victim was chased upstairs by the masked intruder but managed to land a blow on him as well as throw his gym bag.
Nothing was stolen in the attack but the criminal threatened to return.
Detective Constable Ben Harris of Rochdale CID said that the victim could have been blinded and appealed for anyone with information to come forward.
St John"s Ambulance gives information on how to give first aid if someone suffers a foreign body in their eye.
While objects can often be rinsed off, it is important not to touch anything that is on the iris, penetrates the eye or adheres to it.
In such cases, seek medical care immediately.
by Emily Tait