PHL Red Cross advises public to refrain from using fireworks to celebrate New Year


(Eagle News) – The Philippine Red Cross urged the public to refrain from celebrating the New Year with fireworks.

Fireworks is not only a fire hazard, but also harmful to the environment because of the smoke it emits. It also poses a health hazard especially those with asthma, the PRC said.

“Have a healthy lifestyle. Don’t burn your money. Instead, celebrate the New Years with your families simply, spending time with them. Let us welcome the New Year resolving to support different humanitarian programs,” said PRC chairman Senator Richard Gordon.

Gordon said that the Red Cross will continue to be on standby even during the New Year’s celebrations, with its dedicated staff and volunteers on duty round the clock to attend to emergency cases.

“We have people working 24 hours. Our 150 ambulances nationwide are on stand-by ready to respond to emergency situations. Our firetrucks and water tankers are on alert. Our blood banks are open even during holidays,” Gordon added.

The Red Cross also issued these reminders if people will insist on using fireworks:

1. Use only authorized firecracker products.
2. Follow the manufacturer’s instruction on the labels.
3. Use a flat and solid surface with no dry grass when lighting firework products.
4. DO NOT USE matches, candles, lighters, sparklers and cigarettes to ignite the firecracker. Use punk incense sticks instead to avoid catching the blast on your hands.
5. When the firework strand ignites, MOVE AWAY. Do not stand over it.
6. When the fireworks device fails to ignite, do not attempt to re-light it. Pour water onto the fireworks.
7. Allowable fireworks should ONLY be used at designated firecrackers area in barangays or communities.

And in case of fireworks burns, the PRC said here is what you can do:

1. Run injured body part, e.g., hand, in cold running water to reduce the heat level. Doing this helps clean the wound and reduce the damage.
2. Carefully dry the burned area with a clean dry cloth
3. Apply a topical burn spray or ointment to the burned area.
4. Wrap the wound with a clean and wet sheet s or gauze to prevent infection s.
6. Bring the patient to a hospital or other medical treatment facility, if needed.

Below is the list of allowable and prohibited fireworks, as ordered by the Philippine National Police.

Legal fireworks/pyrotechnics devices
Baby rocket
El Diablo
Judas’ belt
Paper caps
“Pulling of strings”
Sky rocket (kwitis)
Small “triangulo”
Jumbo, regular, and special luces
Roman Candle
Whistle device

The following are the banned fireworks/pyrotechnics devices:
Super Lolo
Atomic Triangle
Large Judas belt
Large Bawang
Goodbye Philippines
Bin Laden
Mother Rockets
Lolo Thunder
Atomic Bomb
Five Star
Giant whistle bomb
Other unlabeled imported firecrackers

The Red Cross said the public can call the PRC Hotline 143 in case of any emergency.