Another New Year related post, I hope I am not stretching it. But anyway, recent reports state that there were 94 cases of firecracker related injuries in 7 hospitals in Metro Manila, according to the Philippine Department of Health. Every year, a lot of people suffer these types of injuries because of the New Year tradition: using fireworks to celebrate the new year.
The same Department of Health, has now supported a proposal by a few local government units to ban fireworks during the aforementioned holiday. I too, would be supporting this. I don’t really think that we need to follow the traditional celebration. These LGUs also proposes to just have a communal fireworks display, to decrease the number of deaths, accidents and/or injuries. These ban would only be supported if there would be a replacement, based on experience. A good example would be a mini concert (for free). Most of us would not want something taken away without having a suitable replacement, even though we know that the former is dangerous.
The Philippine National Police already has a crack down scheme against highly explosive and illegal fireworks, but I admit that there is little effect to the trend, since police are easily swayed or bribed. Sometimes, they themselves sell these types of fireworks, after confiscating them (I know this for a fact).
Some would argue that we only need more safety measure to avoid these accidents, but honestly, I don’t think the level of discipline the Pinoys have would make this effective. Majority can’t even throw trash in the proper trash bins and you expect them to follow safety regulations? I also read somewhere that the people opposing the ban are complaining that the celebration would be “too boring” without fireworks. I go back to my previous statement, just have a common fireworks display for everyone. It is better to watch, and it would decrease accidents or deaths.