EVEN with the New Year celebration still not over, the Baguio Health Department is hopeful of having zero related firecracker injury in the city.
Dr. Rowena Galpo of the BHD in a radio interview said this maybe a result of their continuous campaign to remind the public on the negative effects of the use of firecrackers.
“Based on the result of our surveillance on the different hospitals in the city, the good news is that we have recorded a zero number of firecracker-related injuries since we started our monitoring on December 21 to 27 of this year,” Galpo explained.
In 2016, BHD recorded eight firecracker related injuries with five coming from Baguio City and three coming from outside the city. In 2017, at least three were injured in the city while the two patients who sought for treatment was not from Baguio.
“Based on our records, it has been two years that we have recorded a zero number of firecracker related injuries in the same period after Christmas. Those cases related to firecracker injuries only came on New Year’s Eve,” Galpo stated.
BHD attributes the decrease in the number of firecracker related injuries as to the community being convinced there are other ways in celebrating Christmas and New Year.
“If we want our beliefs in celebrating with a bang, there are other means of making noises which I think the communities have been convinced. Little by little, we are being educated that it is not only firecrackers which can be used to celebrate Christmas and New Year. Second is the implementation of policies wherein we can say that it has been effective like the banning and selling or the sale and use which are now not being sold in public,” Galpo said.
Galpo favors the implementation of community based fireworks display provided that those who will conduct the display are well trained. She also warned the community on the use of firecrackers allowed by the government which can also cause burns and injuries.
“Even pailaw’s(flares) which is allowed by law causes burns and injuries. I don’t have the records but last year, there was an injury incurred caused by legal firecrackers which we discourage. Even the smoke coming from pailaw’s causes asthma to the children having asthma which we do not advice, this is why we are for the total ban on the use of firecrackers,” Galpo added.