Latest Stories

Fireworks makers ready to cheer storm-hit areas

SCENES like this, of Supertyphoon “Yolanda” survivors burning firewood from debris to light the darkness, have become familiar in Tacloban City. DENNIS JAY SANTOS/INQUIRER MINDANAO

SAN RAFAEL, Bulacan—Fireworks manufacturers in Bulacan province are ready to light up the skies of communities in the Visayas devastated by Supertyphoon “Yolanda” this Christmas and New Year, but only if they were asked to.

Joven Ong, head of the Philippine Fireworks Association, said the industry believed these light shows could cheer up survivors, but manufacturers were cautious about being painted as callous.

He said survivors needed food, shelter and jobs more than a night’s display of pomp and color.

Ong’s Dragon Fireworks Inc. won in September the Pyronale 2013 World Fireworks Competition, an annual contest for fireworks manufacturers in Berlin. Dragon’s 15-minute light show, accompanied by Filipino folk tunes, was declared the winner.

“We may be criticized for doing something wrong when all we want is to offer help. You know, when one tries to express support and it is misinterpreted, [one can] end up being demonized,” Ong said.

He said the fireworks industry also needed local officials to make the first move because communities would need to clear areas for the show, which could be a tough task in places where populated areas had been turned into huge piles of debris.

Ong said the industry had sent food and aid to the ravaged Visayan provinces.

Celso Cruz, president emeritus of Philippine Pyrotechnic Manufacturers and Dealers Association Inc., said the industry expected to suffer, too, from the effects of Yolanda, which damaged supplies and slowed sales down.

There are manufacturers of firecrackers and pyrotechnic products in Iloilo, Negros islands and Cebu that were also hit by Yolanda.

For the last few years, the country’s fireworks trade has been more concerned about the impact of a government-sponsored campaign against fireworks that has influenced many local governments.

In Baguio City, Mayor Mauricio Domogan said he would ban the sale of firecrackers and pyrotechnic products.

Domogan has turned down an appeal by local firecracker traders, whose group is called Paputok, Luces at Iba Pa (Fireworks, Sparklers and Other products).

The mayor said he stood firm on the ban, which he first imposed in 2012 to ensure an accident- and injury-free celebration of New Year in the city. Carmela Reyes-Estrope, Inquirer Central Luzon, with a report from Vincent Cabreza, Inquirer Northern Luzon

Follow Us

Follow us on Facebook Follow on Twitter Follow on Twitter

Recent Stories:

Complete stories on our Digital Edition newsstand for tablets, netbooks and mobile phones; 14-issue free trial. About to step out? Get breaking alerts on your mobile.phone. Text ON INQ BREAKING to 4467, for Globe, Smart and Sun subscribers in the Philippines.

Tags: Bulacan , fireworks , supertyphoon , Typhoon , Yolanda

Copyright © 2014, .
To subscribe to the Philippine Daily Inquirer newspaper in the Philippines, call +63 2 896-6000 for Metro Manila and Metro Cebu or email your subscription request here.
Factual errors? Contact the Philippine Daily Inquirer's day desk. Believe this article violates journalistic ethics? Contact the Inquirer's Reader's Advocate. Or write The Readers' Advocate:
c/o Philippine Daily Inquirer Chino Roces Avenue corner Yague and Mascardo Streets, Makati City, Metro Manila, Philippines Or fax nos. +63 2 8974793 to 94
  1. US teacher fired over comment on black president
  2. Enrile chief aide back in PH ‘to face charges’
  3. Filipinos, Dane re-enact crucifixion of Christ
  4. Magnitude-7.5 earthquake shakes Mexican capital
  5. Henares on Pacquiao bashing: I did not start this
  6. ‘No real progress in PH if dynasties not dismantled’
  7. Massive infra spending set
  8. More legal woes for Cedric Lee
  9. Easter crucifixions draw huge crowds
  10. Korea ferry captain arrested, divers spot bodies
  1. Kim Henares needs a reprimand, says Cayetano
  2. Suspect in Vhong Navarro mauling tries to leave PH
  3. More legal woes for Cedric Lee
  4. ‘No real progress in PH if dynasties not dismantled’
  5. ‘Mom, I love you,’ says text from student on sinking ferry
  6. Fr. Suarez says last Mass on Easter before returning donated land to San Miguel
  7. Enrile chief aide back in PH ‘to face charges’
  8. Massive infra spending set
  9. Henares on Pacquiao bashing: I did not start this
  10. I’ll follow my conscience on Estrada, says JV Ejercito
  1. KL confirms Malaysian Airlines Flight MH370 ended in Indian Ocean
  2. MRT passengers pass the hat for 6-year-old Ashley
  3. Rookie, lady cops lauded for quick response to MOA heist
  4. Malaysia averts another air tragedy; pilot lands troubled plane safely
  5. Revilla says he was joking; Lacson stands by his story
  6. Revilla ‘consulted’ Lacson on how he evaded arrest
  7. Police rule out foul play in Helena Belmonte’s death as boyfriend is ‘traumatized’
  8. Cudia, dismissed for lying, got 99% in conduct
  9. Model Helena Belmonte wished ‘to slash her wrist and hope to die’
  10. Hammer-wielding robbers cause chaos at Philippines’ Mall of Asia


  • 16 suffer burns in Batangas sugar factory accident
  • Angat level drops; cloud seeding set
  • Indigenous aspiration in Bangsamoro
  • Banahaw continues to lure pilgrims, trekkers
  • Passion of Christ moves survivors
  • Sports

  • Tottenham beats Fulham 3-1 in Premier League
  • Martino defends Messi, takes blame for Barca fail
  • Vettel hoping for resurgence at Chinese GP
  • MLB pitcher donates $100,000 for Sewol ferry victims
  • Hamilton takes pole at Chinese Grand Prix
  • Lifestyle

  • Levine designs womenswear with help from fiancee
  • Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Nobel laureate, dies at 87
  • Ford Mustang turns 50 atop Empire State Building
  • Pro visual artists, lensmen to judge Pagcor’s photo contest
  • ‘Labahita a la bacalao’
  • Entertainment

  • Why ‘Noah’ can’t dock his ark at Philippine theaters
  • Acclaimed artist goes wild while on holiday
  • Believing in this mermaid
  • Missing Xian
  • Minnie Driver plays devastated mother to a stillborn child
  • Business

  • A workplace of new possibilities
  • Learning by doing: pilgrimage of faith
  • Fiat-Chrysler to produce iconic Jeep in China from 2015
  • US commerce secretary spells out economic facet of ‘pivot to Asia’
  • Italy sells luxury state cars on eBay
  • Technology

  • Nasa’s moon-orbiting robot crashes down
  • Netizens pay respects to Gabriel Garcia Marquez
  • Nokia recalls 30,000 chargers for Lumia 2520 tablet
  • Facebook rolls out ‘nearby friends’ feature
  • Netizens seethe over Aquino’s ‘sacrifice’ message
  • Opinion

  • Editorial cartoon, April 17, 2014
  • A humbler Church
  • Deepest darkness
  • ‘Agnihotra’ for Earth’s health
  • It’s the Holy Week, time to think of others
  • Global Nation

  • Cesar Chavez movie sparks memories of Fil-Am labor leaders
  • Filipinos in US poised for success
  • Visas for priests and other faith leaders
  • DOH to continue tracking co-passengers of OFW infected with MERS virus
  • 5 Filipinos with MERS in UAE reported in stable condition
  • Marketplace