'Piccolo' still most dangerous firecracker, warns DOH

Posted at 12/27/12 7:20 PM

MANILA, Philippines – “Piccolo” is still the most dangerous firecracker for children, the Department of Health (DOH) warned on Thursday.

Aside from Piccolo, “kwitis” and “5-star” are among the leading cause of firecracker-related injuries from December 21 to December 26.

“Piccolo leads by far because Piccolo is easily available. It’s very, very cheap, if not the cheapest, and it doesn’t require matches to ignite it. It’s very available, accessible and popular among children,” said DOH spokesperson and Assistant Secretary Eric Tayag.

Tayag said, compared to the same period last year, the number of injuries has dropped from 147 cases to 108 this year.

He said 107 of the injuries were firecracker-related while one case of stray bullet was reported.

However, Tayag noted that 5 of the injuries were critical and required amputation.

Firework accidents

Tayag reminded the public that in case of firecracker accidents, the wound should be cleaned first under running water for at least 10 minutes.

“Kapag nasabugan kayo ng paputok, patuloy pa din ang pag-init niyan at madadamay ang ibang bahagi ng laman na malapit doon sa napaltusan,” he said.

The wound should then be wrapped in a clean, dry cloth before the victim is brought to a hospital.

If a child accidentally ingests a firecracker, Tayag said parents should be ready with egg whites.

He said a child should swallow at least 5 egg whites to prevent any complications.

“There’s going to be problems with the liver and patients die within several hours within ingesting watusi or other firecrackers,” he said.

The DOH is again appealing to the public not to use firecrackers to welcome the New Year.

The health department is planning to recommend a partial ban on firecrackers as the number of firecracker-related injuries has stopped declining over the last 5 years.