MANILA - The labor department ordered a work stoppage in all establishments that manufacture or sell firecrackers after five people were killed in two accidents ahead of the holidays.
Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello said there was "grave and imminent danger to the health and safety" of workers in the said establishments.
"This work stoppage order is hereby issued for all establishments engaged in the manufacture and sale of pyrotechnics and firecrackers," Bello said in the order.
Last month, two people were killed while 24 others were wounded after a row of fireworks stalls caught fire in Bocaue, Bulacan, the country's firecracker hub.
On Wednesday, three more people were killed and six others were hurt in an explosion at a separate facility in Sta. Maria town, Bulacan.
Bello also ordered labor officials to inspect firecracker stores and factories for compliance with safety standards.