In essence, pyrotechnics use by individuals that has been a staple during the Christmas and New Year holidays and other merrymaking events such as weddings and parties, is being limited under the EO, aptly titled ‘The Regulation and Control of the Use of Firecrackers and Other Pyrotechnic Devices.’
Unregulated use of pyrotechnics, firecrackers especially, always result in injuries and even deaths, aside from increasing the levels of air pollution.
“Regulating the use of firecrackers among individuals and confining its use to community displays has long been an advocacy by the DOH owing to the number of injuries among users and bystanders alike and the rise in air pollution it causes in the aftermath of said annual events,” the Department of Health said in a press statement.
The new EO is set to take immediate effect, to give firecracker manufacturers ample time to look for alternative products or livelihood as the ban is expected to hit their businesses the hardest.
The Health department has always launched a campaign towards the Christmas holidays to warn against the use of firecrackers due to injuries and casualties.
It noted an improvement in 2017, where only 630 firecracker-related injuries were recorded between December 21, 2016 to January 6, 2017 and no deaths. The number is 292 less compared to that of the previous year.
Local government units were given the task to ensure pyrotechnic use in their localities would be strictly monitored. Compliance by holding community fireworks display contributed to the decline in numbers, according to DOH.
The most dangerous among firecrackers that was often the cause of the injuries, especially among children, is the piccolo which is small but was a powerful explosive.
“The DOH welcomes this EO that strengthens the previous law banning the sale and manufacture of firecrackers...Now with new law, we are anticipating an even much lower incidence of firecracker-related injuries, and we hope to maintain the zero-casualty, specifically during New Year revelries,” Secretary of Health Paulyn Ubial said.
The Philippine National Police, in coordination with DOH, the Departments of Interior and Local Government and Environment and Natural Resources, as well as the Bureau of Fire Protection, will develop the EO’s Implementing Rules and Regulation. MIMS
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