EDITORIAL – Safe merrymaking 2.0
(The Freeman) - December 27, 2015 - 9:00am

Authorities have reported fewer firecracker-related injuries across the country during the Christmas celebration. This is a good sign, but this also means there is more work to do. The authorities must now step up in their campaign to instill safe merrymaking.

The Department of Health and the Philippine National Police are united in reporting that there were only a few firecracker-related injuries during the Christmas revelry. Kudos to both government agencies for continuously campaigning against the use of firecrackers especially prohibited ones with the Iwas Paputok, Iwas Disgrasya campaign. We hope the scenario will be the same during the New Year revelry later this week, that there will be fewer injuries, too.

But the decreasing firecracker incidents must be reinforced in order for the campaign to become more effective. It is time for authorities to level up in their campaign. A good place to start is asking, "Why are prohibited firecrackers still available in the market and why are they still being manufactured?"

It is alarming that firecrackers and other pyrotechnics that have long been considered prohibited are still being sold in different areas in the country. Piccolo, Watusi, Super Lolo, boga, Goodbye Philippines and other prohibited firecrackers are still available in the market and are the ones responsible for the firecracker-related injuries. Worse, these prohibited firecrackers are being sold outside the designated display areas for firecrackers and other pyrotechnic materials.

Aside from cracking down on the sellers of these prohibited firecrackers, the police should also consider going after manufacturers who continue to make such products despite the prohibition. If such products are no longer manufactured, then there will be no prohibited firecrackers to sell, and there will be no prohibited firecrackers to buy!

There are only a few areas considered to be a haven for firecracker and pyro-makers in the country. Bulacan in Luzon and Barangay Babag in Lapu-Lapu City are among the popular ones. A crackdown starting with the manufacturers of prohibited firecrackers will give a big boost to the Iwas Paputok, Iwas Disgrasya campaign.

The dwindling number of firecracker-related injuries across the country year after year is a sign that some people have learned their lesson. It is high time to go after those stubborn manufacturers who continue to flood the market with prohibited firecrackers.

BULACAN DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND THE PHILIPPINE NATIONAL POLICE FIRECRACKERS GOODBYE PHILIPPINES IWAS DISGRASYA IWAS PAPUTOK LAPU-LAPU CITY LUZON AND BARANGAY BABAG NEW YEAR PROHIBITED SUPER LOLO
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