DAGUPAN CITY – Mayor Belen T. Fernandez is supportive to the idea of having a designated site for fireworks display in every barangay where every member of the community can converge together to welcome the New Year.

“The idea is much safer so that every member of the community can develop oneness and where they can also conduct one grand party as they await for the coming of the New Year,” Fernandez said.

The mayor spoke during the launching at the city plaza of the ‘Iwas Paputok’ campaign of the Department of Health (DOH), an activity that was started with a fun walk along the main thoroughfares of the city early in the morning of December 12.

Dr. Myrna C. Cabotaje, DOH Region 1 Director, also temporarily designated as Assistant Secretary for Northern Luzon along with the Chief of Police of Dagupan City Police Station Police Superintendent Neil O. Miro, City Fire Marshal Romeo Tungpalan, and the Punong Barangays of the city led by Councilor Marcelino Fernandez joined the fun walk and the launching program.

“It is important that our punong barangays are present because we will not succeed in the implementation of the ‘Iwas Paputok’ campaign in our city without their participation and commitment to our cause,” said Cabotaje.

Cabotaje disclosed that Dagupan recorded a high incidence of fireworks related injuries in 2014 and 2015 at 33 and 27 reported injuries, respectively.

From 2014 the recorded age of victims ranged from 58 to 10 years old but in 2015 and 2016 the victims were mostly children aged less than 10 years old while 75 percent of the injured adults were those that were intoxicated.

Picollo recorded 30 percent as the main cause of firecracker injury among children.

“Our campaign will not end here. Everyone, bata man o matanda has an important role to do by making sure na walang paputok sa kanilang bahay o sa kanilang komunidad. Hindi puedeng ang DOH lang o ang ating kapulisan o bombero ang kikilos dito kundi lahat tayo kumilos para ma-zero ang  number of victims during New Year,” said Fernandez.

In addition, the DOH provided each barangay nurse with a medical kit which they can use to administer first aid to the victims of firecracker related injuries. (Joseph C. Bacani/CIO/Dec. 13, 2016)