DOH reminds public to exercise caution in using firecrackers in welcoming the New Year

Marje Pelayo   •   December 18, 2018   •   2116

(file photo)

MANILA, Philippines – Hospitals are getting ready for the merry-makings this holiday specifically in welcoming the new year.

As early as today, the Department of Health (DOH) is making sure that emergency equipment, tools, medicines and staff at Tondo Medical Center are all set to receive patients.

The said hospital is the main destination for fireworks and pyrotechnic victims coming from Manila, Navotas and Caloocan during the year-end revelry.

“Ang mga pasyente po namin dito sa ospital sa nakaraang tatlong taon, wala naman po talagang na admit puro mga minor injuries lang so mga minor operations lang po ang ginawa naming,” explained Dr. Maria Isabelita Estrella, Medical Center Chief II of Tondo Medical Center.

The hospital record shows significant decline in the number of admitted firework-related victims from Manila in the recent years.

From 41 in 2015, the number declined to 29 in 2016 and 24 in 2017.

The DOH hopes that there will be fewer fireworks-related victims this year.

Estrella, noted however, that the hospital has not received victims of stray bullets or fireworks poisoning since 2015.

“Nakakapanlumo lang malaman na ang pinaka malaking dahilan ng ating mga injuires sa fireworks ay dahil sa bawal na paputok, (na) piccolo. So kailangan siguro na pag-ibayuhin pa ang pag-regulate, pag-control,” said DOH Undersecretary for Public Health Myrna Cabotaje.

Executive order number 28, Series of 2017 regulates and control the use of firecrackers and other pyrotechnic devices in the country.

It also bans the use of strong and harmful firecrackers such as watusi, piccolo, super lolo, atomic triangle, Judas belt, large bawang, pillbox, goodbye Philippines, mother rocket, lolo thunder, bin laden, pla-pla, giant whistle bomb, and other giant unlabeled firecrackers.

“Sa kagawaran ng kalusugan gusto nating malusog kayo. Sana sa amin total firecracker ban pero gusto natin magsaya. Tapos iyong mga industry ay gusto naman kumita ng konti kaya iwas paputok lang kaya ang ine-encourage natin ay fireworks display,” Cabotaje said.

The DOH strongly reminds the public, especially parents, to tell their children not to pick up failed or unexploded fireworks to prevent harm.

The agency likewise reminds households to double check the surrounding area for the fireworks display to avoid fire and other untoward incidents. Marje Pelayo (with reports from JL Asayo)


DTI orders PNP to seize firecrackers with no PS markings

Maris Federez   •   December 20, 2019

MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) has tasked the Philippine National Police (PNP) to confiscate firecrackers being sold in Bulacan without Product Safety (PS) markings.

In an inspection it conducted in Bocaue, Bulacan on Friday (Dec. 20), the DTI checked several types of firecrackers to see if they have the PS marking.

According to DTI Assistant Secretary for Consumer Protection Group Atty. Anne Claire Cabochan, the PS mark is proof that the product has undergone a thorough inspection and is safe to use.

“Lalo na yung mga produktong na medyo delicate to handle kung hindi yan dumaan ng certification process yung manufacturing nila tsaka yung handling storage at lahat eh hindi dumadaan sa tamang proseso mas malaki yung magiging danger,” Cabochan said.

Cabochan said the DTI will make an inventory of all those without the PS markings and will ask the PNP to confiscate the product after inventory.

The DTI also announced that the license of Phoenix Fireworks has already expired since Wednesday (Dec.18).

With this, the legitimate manufacturers left in the market as far as the DTI is concerned are Tiger Fireworks and Pegasus Fireworks.

The agency, however, clarified that Phoenix can still sell the rest of its fireworks products as they were manufactured before the expiration of its license. — (from the report of Joan Nano) /mbmf

PNP-FEO releases list of prohibited firecrackers

Maris Federez   •   November 13, 2019

MANILA, Philippines – The Philippine National Police-Firearms and Explosives Office (PNP-FEO) on Wednesday (November 13) released to the public the list of prohibited firecrackers and pyrotechnic devices.

According to FEO acting director Rommil Mitra, they released the list to notify the public this early of the kinds of firecrackers and pyrotechnics that must not be sold in the market.

Included in the list are explosives that are overweight (more than 1/3 teaspoon or more than 0.2 grams); oversized; with fuse that is either short (burns out in less than 3 seconds) or long (burns for more than 6 seconds); imported and unlabeled; and with sulphur or phosphorous mixed in chlorates.

Meanwhile, the list of banned firecrackers includes:

  • piccolo
  • super lolo
  • atomic triangle
  • large judas belt
  • large bawang
  • pillbox
  • bosa
  • goodbye Philippines
  • bin laden
  • mother rocket
  • lolo thunder
  • coke in can
  • atomic bomb
  • five star
  • pla-pla
  • giant whistle bomb
  • kabasi
  • watusi

On the other hand, firecrackers that should be used inside the firecracker zone are as follows:

  • baby rocket
  • bawang
  • el diablo
  • judas belt
  • paper caps
  • pulling of strings
  • sky rocket or kwitis
  • small trianggulo

Pyrotechnics that are allowed to be used outside the firecracker zone:

  • butterfly
  • fountain
  • jumbo regular at special
  • luces
  • mabuhay
  • roman candle
  • sparklers
  • trompillo
  • whistle devices

The PNO-FEO reminds the public to maintain safety by refraining from buying banned or prohibited firecrackers and pyrotechnics.

Mitra also warned that stores that will be caught selling the banned products will have their licenses revoked and their merchandise confiscated. (with details from Lea Ylagan) /mbmf

DOH agrees with FDA decision to ban Dengvaxia in Phl

Maris Federez   •   August 22, 2019

A Filipino nurse prepares to administer an anti-dengue vaccine during a nationwide vaccination at a school in the flood-prone city of Marikina, east of Manila, Philippines, 04 April 2016. (Photoville International / FILE)

The Department of Health (DOH) has rejected the request of Sanofi Pasteur to overturn the decision of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to ban the use of Dengvaxia vaccine in the Philippines.

With this, the DOH approved the ruling of the FDA to permanently revoke the certificate of product registration of Dengvaxia for Sanofi’s failure to submit the necessary post-approval requirements.

“The decision concerns Sanofi’s complete disregard of FDA regulations, which were precisely put in place by law to ensure safety,” DOH Secretary Francisco Duque III said in a statement.

Although Sanofi was able to submit the first two versions of its risk management plans (RMP), the pharmaceutical company failed to submit the third and final version of the plan.

The DOH said, however, that Sanofi may apply for a new certificate of product registration (CPR) for Dengvaxia but this must be in accordance with the FDA regulations.

“Given that Dengvaxia is an innovative drug, the importance of complying with these post-marketing commitments is critical to public safety,” the statement added.

Meanwhile, the department has assured that it continues to address the increasing cases of dengue in the country. /mbmf


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