Makers to gov’t: Expand areas for ’cracker use
BOCAUE, BULACAN — Manufacturers of firecrackers and pyrotechnic products makers have urged amendments to President Rodrigo Duterte’s order that would allow residents with wide yards and safe surroundings to light up fireworks during holidays.
“To minimize the risk of injuries and casualties, the use of firecrackers shall henceforth be confined to community fireworks displays,” said the Executive Order No. 28 issued by Mr. Duterte on June 20.
“The practice of setting off fireworks is a family affair and has been intended to drive away bad luck… Who will now patronize fireworks if these will only be used in a community setting? How do we drive away evil spirits from our respective houses,” said Celso Cruz, chair emeritus of Philippine Pyrotechnic Manufacturers and Dealers Association Inc.
Cruz said the industry leaders submitted a set of suggestions on July 6, among them a prescription allowing certain homes to light up firecrackers provided these fulfill safety regulations.
He said the suggestions were sent to Supt. Valeriano de Leon, acting chief of firearms and explosives office of the Philippine National Police.
Industry leaders have agreed that condominiums, congested slum areas, alleys, streets and areas near hospitals, depots and gasoline stations are not conducive to lighting up fireworks, Cruz said.
They proposed that “whenever the location or place of residences is not conducive to lighting fireworks (due to the high risk of fires or accidents or their proximity to people), the local government unit shall designate a community fireworks display area at a safe distance … if possible.” —Carmela Reyes-Estrope
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