GENERAL SANTOS CITY (MindaNews/06 January) — Banned firecracker piccolo emerged anew as the leading cause of firecracker-related injuries in the recent Christmas and New Year revelries in South Cotabato province.
Dr. Rogelio Aturdido Jr., South Cotabato Integrated Provincial Health Office (IPHO) chief, said Tuesday they recorded a total of 89 injury cases due to piccolo out of the 112 firecracker-related injuries recorded in the area during the holidays.
He said such figure was based on the monitoring conducted by the IPHO’s epidemiology and surveillance unit from Nov. 30 to Jan. 5.
“Piccolo was again the number one cause of injuries and the victims were mostly children aged 10 years-old and below,” he said.
Aturdido said their monitoring showed that the total firecracker-related injury cases in the province increased by eight percent in the recent holidays, specifically to 112 from the previous 104.
He said majority of the cases involved children aged three to 10 years-old, followed by those within the 11 to 21 years-old age range.
The youngest victim was a three year-old boy, who was injured due to piccolo explosion, and the oldest was a 60 year-old man.
A 43 year-old resident of Surallah town lost a finger on Christmas Eve due to an accidental explosion of the whistle bomb firecracker.
A 13 year-old boy from Barangay Namnama in Koronadal City lost two fingers and suffered serious burns due to an explosion of collected firecracker powders.
Aside from piccolo, Aturdido said six residents were injured by accidental explosions of kwitis or sky rocket and four others by pla-pla and flying tiger firecrackers.
Koronadal City posted the most number of injuries with 27, followed by the municipalities of Tupi with 21 and Polomolok with 17, he said.
He said all 10 towns and lone city of the province recorded cases of firecracker-related injuries, with Tampakan posting the least with four.
As early as November, the IPHO launched a massive advocacy and awareness campaign against the use of firecrackers and fireworks in various parts of the province.
The campaign is mainly focused on children and teenagers that posted the most number of firecracker-related injuries in the area in the previous Christmas and New Year holidays.
In the previous Christmas and New Year holidays, the province posted a total of 104 firecracker-related injury cases, 50 of which involved children aged 2 to 10.
Piccolo caused the most injuries with 78 victims, followed by kwitis with 10, five-star with four and, pulbura and sparklers with three each. (MindaNews)