Firecracker injuries down as DOH credits Duterte order


Posted at Jan 01 2018 11:33 AM | Updated as of Jan 01 2018 02:03 PM

A child reacts as he gets treatment at the Jose Reyes Memorial Medical Center in Manila during the early hours of Jan. 1, 2018. Victims of stray bullets, stabbing, and illegal firecrackers were among the patients brought to the hospital during New Year's celebrations. George Calvelo, ABS CBN News

MANILA - Firecracker-related injuries were slashed by more than half in New Year's Eve revelries compared to the previous year due to new government restrictions, a cabinet official said Monday.

From Dec. 21, 2017 to Jan. 1, 2018, the Department of Health recorded 191 firecracker injuries, a "substantial" decrease from the previous year, Health Secretary Francisco Duque III said.

The DOH least year reported 604 injuries from Dec. 21, 2016 to Jan 2, 2017.

"Overall, the government's campaign against fireworks has reduced the number of injuries," Duque III told reporters.

President Rodrigo Duterte's executive order restricting the use of firecrackers to community zones was implemented for the first time over the weekend.

There was one stray bullet incident, but no reported deaths or cases of firecracker ingestion, officials said.

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Piccolo was the top cause injuries, accounting for 49 percent of cases, followed by "kuwitis" or rocket at 7 percent. Fountain and "boga" or improvised cannons each accounted for 5 percent, Duque said.

Firecracker-related amputations dropped to 7 cases in 2017 from 19 incidents in the previous year, he said.

Most of the cases were from the National Capital Region that accounted for 115, followed by Western Visayas with 15. Central Luzon, Calabarzon, and the Bicol region each reported 13 cases, Duque said.

Eighty-four percent of the victims were males aged between 11 months and 96 years old, he added.