Local authorities in Antique credit the “Iwas Paputok” campaign of the Department of Health (DOH) for successfully reducing firecracker-related injuries in the province during the holiday season.

Only three cases of firecracker injuries have been reported and were immediately treated in various hospitals in Antique province during New Year, according to Irene Dulduco, Integrated Provincial Health Office (IPHO) information officer.

“We can say that the Iwas Paputok (anti-firecracker) campaign was effective due to the fact that the number of firecracker injuries was really reduced this year,” she said.

She added that no firecracker injuries were reported on Christmas Eve compared to the 10 cases last 2018 at the height of Christmas and New Year season.

The DOH’s awareness campaign encouraged local residents to find other ways to welcome the new year by either using plastic toy trumpets or playing loud music.

“The IPHO will continue to monitor the firecracker injuries until January 5 but we hope that there will be no more additional cases,” Dulduco added.

The three reported injuries this year were: a 15-year-old boy from Barangay Lacaron, Sibalom whose left shoulder got hit by kuwitis; a hand injury caused by a whistle bomb to a 33-year-old man from Boroc-boroc in Belison; and, another kwitis-related incident happened to a 53-year-old woman from Sibalom.

No illegal discharge of firearms had been reported yet, according to Lt. Col. Norby Escobar, Antique Provincial Police Office Deputy Director for Operations.

“There had been no reported illegal discharge of firearms by the police or even [among] the civilians,” he cleared. (RJ Espartinez)