Children found high-risk on firecrackers-A A +A
Monday, December 13, 2010
HEALTH and environmental advocates reminded the public anew over the danger of firecrackers this holiday season, especially among children.
Under its “Iwas Paputoxic” campaign, the EcoWaste Coalition cautioned school-age children about the high risk of being injured by firecrackers.
Government data showed that 29 percent, or 288 of the 990 victims of firecracker-related injuries in 2009 were children between one and 10 years of age.
Meanwhile, in a separate advisory by the health department, firecrackers normally carry loads of toxic materials that can seriously impair human health.
The health department said firecrackers and fireworks are made up mainly of gunpowder, which is a mixture of charcoal, sulphur and potassium or sodium nitrate and other chemical additives, including heavy metals.
According to the DOH, the blasting of firecrackers and other pyrotechnic devices generates many pollutants, including carbon dioxide, carbon monoxide, sulfur compounds, particulate matter, metal oxides and organic compounds.
These pose health risks to infants and young children and those with respiratory and cardiovascular diseases.
With this, EcoWaste advised parents to keep their Christmas and New Year celebrations creative without putting risk to life and limb.
“Firecrackers are putting our children’s health and safety in danger, as the bloody statistics show,” said Roy Alvarez, president of the EcoWaste Coalition.
“As responsible adults, it is our shared duty to safeguard our children from toxic exposure and injuries that could jeopardize their health and development,” added Alvarez.
The environmentalist also suggested safe noisemakers in ushering the New Year.
These include creations such as shakers from soap and toothpaste boxes, beverage cans and plastic bottles and maracas from tin cans. Tambourines from flattened bottle caps, as well as cymbals from pots and pans and the all-time favorite torotot or toy horn can also be used. (Virgil Lopez/Sunnex)