MANILA — The Department of Health (DOH) on Wednesday said that firecracker related injuries stands at 176, a few hours before the new year revelry.
In a press briefing Wednesday afternoon, DOH Acting Secretary Janette L. Garin said that 33 cases are eye injuries; 6 amputations; and the majority of the rest due to “piccolo,” a small but banned firecracker.
Garin said that some 122 cases were attributed to “piccolo,” with 57 cases children less than 10 years old.
As this developed, Garin appealed anew to the public to heed the DOH advice to refrain from using firecrackers in celebrating the New Year.
She also presented to the media Mark Jason Samin, a firecracker victim from Manila last year who suffered eye injury by exploding “pla-pla.”
The tricycle driver needed an eye operation and he narrated how the firecracker injury led to drastic change in his earning capacity, and the difficulty and expenses his family had to face due to his “wrong choice” of firecracker.
Samin advised the public against firecrackers which, he said, is like gambling one’s future and productivity.
Garin said that instead of buying firecrackers, the public should spend their money on food or donate to the victims of typhoon “Seniang.”
“Your budget can go a long way if donated to the victims of Seniang,” she said.
Other doctors invited to talk during the press briefing added that aside from hospitalization expenses and risk of losing productive parts of the body like hands or fingers, firecrackers also causes asthma and other chronic obstructive lung disease (COPD) and pollutes the environment.