Health department launches world's safest firecracker

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Wednesday, December 28, 2011


THE Philippines' Department of Health (DOH) launched Wednesday what it considers as the world's safest firecracker to reduce the number of injuries during New Year's Eve celebrations.

It is a compact disc featuring sounds of different firecrackers, such as the watusi, Judas' belt and whistle bomb, among others.

"We call it the Goodbye Paputok (a.k.a. The Safest Firecracker Xperience). This is the safest firecracker in the world. Instead of lighting firecrackers, we should just play this," DOH Assistant Secretary Enrique Tayag said.

compact-disk-new-year-firecracker-2011-12-29
MANILA. The Department of Health launches what it considers as the world’s safest firecracker to reduce the number of injuries during New Year’s Eve celebrations. (Photo courtesy of Paquito Repelente)

The music CD also has a "Fireworks Symphony" preceded by a countdown, as commonly practiced around the world during moments before midnight of January 1.

After being mass produced, the CD will then be distributed to local government officials, which will be tasked to reproduce them and distribute to constituents.

Metro Manila will be given priority since it is where most firecracker-related injuries come from, Tayag said.

The CD, a brainchild of Six Cycle Mind’s guitarist Herbert Hernandez, may soon be available for download, Tayag said.

During the launch of the CD, the official also said that more than half of the total number of firecracker-related injuries is from the piccolo, a firecracker that looks like a miniature dynamite.

"Ang piccolo ang number one na dahilan kung bakit marami nadidisgrasya. Kung wala ito, 64 lang ang kaso natin," he said.

Injuries have reached 141, the DOH's Aksyon: Paputok Injury Reduction (APIR) report said, three days before the New Year.

The number is 32 cases or 18 percent lower than the same period last year, according to the DOH-National Epidemiology Center (NEC).

Of this figure, 77 cases are caused by the piccolo, seven by stray bullets, one due to fireworks ingestion, the report said.

This prompted Tayag to appeal to local government officials to disallow and prevent the sale of the firecracker.

The remaining 133 cases are fireworks-related injuries, the report added. Of this figure, 102 have resulted in blast or burns, 10 with blast and burns with amputation. Twenty cases involve eye injuries.

Eighty-three of those injured actively used firecrackers while another 13 were found to be under the influence of alcohol.

No deaths have been reported by the 50 DOH sentinel hospitals. (AMN/Sunnex)

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