The Department of Health (DOH) have commended Pres. Duterte’s order to restrict the use of firecrackers and other pyrotechnic devices to community zones with the government’s “Iwas Paputok” or Avoid Fireworks campaign as it greatly helped lessen the number of injuries during the New Year’s Day celebration in the country.
“Iwas Paputok, Fireworks Display ang Patok! Makiisa sa Community Fireworks sa Inyong Lugar” was 2017’s slogan in support of Pres. Duterte’s Executive Order No. 28 entitled, “Providing for the Regulation and Control of the Use of Firecrackers and other Pyrotechnic Devices.”
Lighting up of fire crackers and fireworks has been a part of New Year’s Eve celebrations but in 2017 the Philippine government strongly encouraged the Filipinos to prefer “torotots’ (trumpet) over “paputok” (firecrackers/fireworks).
In a CNN Philippines news story on Sunday, DOH confirmed that the number of reported firecracker-related incidents decreased by 60% compared to previous years (2011-2015), while on Monday, January 1st, Philippine National Police (PNP) announced a 40% decrease in firecracker-related injuries compared to 2016.
DOH Secretary Paulyn Ubial disclosed that they have recorded only a total number of 350 firecracker and firework-related cases for New Year’s Eve 2017 nationwide. Among the 350 cases, there were two cases of firecracker ingestion.
Ubial also said that more than half of the victims were children and teenagers below 15 years old. The regions with the most number of firework/firecracker injuries are the National Capital Region (NCR), Region 6 – Western Visayas and Central Luzon.
The DOH has congratulated the President and its partner agencies for actively working to ensure an injury-less celebration of New Year’s Eve.