Duterte orders stricter regulation of fireworks

MANILA, Philippines – President Rodrigo Duterte has ordered the Philippine National Police and other concerned agencies to strictly enforce laws and regulations on the sale, manufacture, and distribution of firecrackers and pyrotechnic devices.

Memorandum Order 31, signed on Monday, October 29, tells the police to conduct inspections to make sure manufacturers, retailers, and users of fireworks comply with all regulations and laws, including Republic Act 7183 or An Act Regulating the Sale, Manufacture, and Use of Firecrackers and other Pyrotechnic Devices.

It also reiterates the PNP's power to confiscate and destroy prohibited fireworks and cancel or revoke licenses and permits given to those violating regulations on fireworks.

The issuance of new licenses and permits is also suspended, pending the review of compliance to relevant laws by those who currently have licenses and permits.

Sale of firecrackers and fireworks is expected to shoot up during the holidays. 

In December 2017, President Duterte also signed Executive Order 28, which confines the use of firecrackers to community fireworks displays under the supervision of a trained person licensed by the Philippine National Police to lessen the risk of injuries.

This year, the health department recorded a 27% drop in firecracker-related injuries for the New Year, compared to last year. The 191 firecracker-related injuries recorded nationwide last January was 77% lower than the 5-year average. – Rappler.com 

Pia Ranada

Pia Ranada covers the Office of the President and Bangsamoro regional issues for Rappler. While helping out with desk duties, she also watches the environment sector and the local government of Quezon City. For tips or story suggestions, you can reach her at pia.ranada@rappler.com.