By LITO RULONA,
The City Council’s Committee on Trade, Commerce and Industry has approved the resolution in regulating the use of firecrackers and other pyrotechnic devices in the city during holidays and special occasions.
Committee chairman and city councilor George Goking has approved on Monday and would also serve as part of the city council’s support to President Rodrigo Duterte’s executive order which confines the use of pyrotechnics to community fireworks displays to lessen the risk of injuries.
“We had an initial talk with City Department of Interior and Local Government (CDILG) chief Jean Docallos that they need city council resolution for the regulation use of firecrackers. This is not a total ban but regulated ban of firecrackers,” he said.
He said they approved resolution was based on the records revealed by the Bureau of Fire Protection -10 (BFP-10) that initial regulation on the use of fire crackers was found effective last December 2016. BFP-10 only recorded a single injury of firecrackers incident last year.
Goking said the regulation of firecrackers is happening in other countries, but in the case of Philippines, firecrackers have been considered as a household commodity and to counter this is for the local government units to regulate it.
“In other countries, only trained people are allowed to use firecrackers. We want to ensure the safety and well-being of the people. No children and no one under the influence of alcohol will use firecrackers,” he said.
He said as posted on the Department of Health website, firecrackers can cause health related issues.
“Pregnant women, children and those having a chronic asthma are the most vulnerable while those who have heart, respiratory or nervous system disorders are also at risk not to mention fire incidents,” he said.
Goking said they are now supporting the move of President Duterte ordering the community fireworks display should be conducted on the occasion or as part of a celebration, competition or similar event held in a venue outside residential areas. Community fireworks displays can only be done under the supervision of a trained person licensed by the Philippine National Police.
“It is allowed by the municipality/city concerned through a permit specifying the date and time of the fireworks display and the specific area in which the display will be conducted, in conformity with national standards, rules and regulations,” he reads the president order.
Other pyrotechnic devices may be used outside community fireworks displays but must be subject to existing laws and regulations. The president tasked the director general of the PNP to define and disseminate information for what constitutes prohibited firecrackers and pyrotechnic devices.