Police warn vs illegal firecrackers

BULACAN. Philippine National Police Chief Oscar Albayalde leads the inspection of firecracker stores in Bocaue, Bulacan, considered the fireworks capital in the Philippines, on Friday, December 28, 2018. (Photo grabbed from PNP Facebook)

WITH only four days left before the New Year revelry, Philippine National Police (PNP) Chief Oscar Albayalde warned the public against buying and selling illegal firecrackers.

“Sa ating mga kababayan, bumili lang tayo ng kung ano ‘yung prescribed ng batas, kung ano ‘yung legal. Wag na nating ipilit ‘yung mga ganitong kalalaki [na paputok] dahil baka mamaya baka madisgrasya pa tayo,” he said after he inspected firecracker shops in Bocaue, Bulacan, considered the fireworks capital in the Philippines, on Friday, December 28.

(To our countrymen, let us buy only those allowed by law. Do not buy those huge firecrackers, or we could get hurt.)

Firecrackers that are prohibited by the PNP include piccolo, watusi, giant whistle bomb, giant bawang, large judas belt, super lolo or thunder lolo, atomic bomb, atomic big triangulo, pillbox, boga, kwiton, Goodbye Earth, Goodbye Bading, Hello Columbia, Coke-in-Can, kabasi, og, and other unlabeled and imported firecrackers.

Those found violating Republic Act No. 7183 or the act regulating the manufacture, sale, distribution, or use of firecrackers and other pyrotechnic device, will pay a fine of from P20,000 to P30,000, or may face imprisonment of six months to one year.

Ating salubungin ang Bagong Taon nang may pag-iingat. Narito ang listahan ng mga pinagbabawal na paputok. Manatili tayong alerto at mapagmasid sa lahat ng oras.

Posted by Philippine National Police on Thursday, December 27, 2018

Albayalde also reminded the public to light firecrackers only in the community fireworks display areas designated in every barangay.

Albayalde said that based on their inspection, all the shops in Bocaue complied with all the necessary requirements such as fire certificates and fire safety equipment.

“Based on our inspection this morning, ‘yung mga nakita nating mga tindahan ay all compliant. Meron silang mga fire certificate. Meron silang certificate, business permits, and also permits coming from the firearms and explosives unit,” he said.

(The shops we inspected this morning were compliant. They have fire certificates, business permits and permits from the Firearms and Explosives Unit.)

Albayalde also reported that the police did not see any prohibited firecrackers being sold.

He said, however, that the provincial Police director of Bulacan reported that two manufacturers of illegal firecrackers were arrested recently. Confiscated were illegal firecrackers amounting to P300,000.

Albayalde hoped that firecracker related injuries this 2018 will no longer climb.

“Hopefully di na tumaas yung 24. Hopefully maging minimal na lang yung [firecracker related injuries],” he said.

Last December 26, the Department of Health (DOH) reported that from December 21 up to December 26 there were 24 individuals who were injured due to fire crackers. The health department said this was 54 percent lower compared to the same period in 2017.

As of 5:59 a.m. Friday, however, the number of fireworks-related injuries has climbed to 40 cases, based on the Fireworks-related Injuries (FWRI) Report #7 of the DOH.

The cases include 38 (95 percent) injuries due to fireworks, and 2 (5 percent) fireworks ingestion, reported from the period of December 21 (6 a.m.) to December 28 (5:59 a.m.).

“This is 38 cases (49 percent) lower compared to the same reporting period in 2017,” said the DOH.

Boga has been the consistent top cause of injuries with 11 cases, or 28 percent of the total.

Piccolo, which has been the top cause of injuries in previous years, has caused only three injuries (8 percent).

Other top causes of injuries are: Kwitis with 5 (13 percent), Triangle with 3 (8 percent), and Baby rocket and Luces with 2 (50 percent) each.

Among the victims, males accounted for 35 (92 percent), while the age range is at 2 to 69 years old with the median age being 10.

The types of injuries sustained, meanwhile, are blast/burn without amputation at 23 (61 percent); blast with amputation at 4 (11 percent); and eye injury at 13 (34 percent).

The number of fireworks ingestion cases remained at only 2 as of December 28.

“Update on the 2nd case is that the patient was discharged already by the UP-National Poison Management and Control Center,” said the DOH.

On Wednesday, the DOH reported that a six-year old boy from Tondo, Manila that accidentally ingested pili crackers that possibly contains potassium nitrate and potassium chloride. (With reports from HDT/SunStar Philippines)


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