The Palace has appealed to the public to keep children away from getting hold of firecrackers in celebrating New Year.
Palace deputy spokesman Abigail Valte made the stance in the government’s intensified efforts in reducing firecracker-related injuries and other accidents in welcoming 2014.
“We would like to remind the public against the use of firecrackers, especially the children. Children should not be allowed to get hold of firecrackers and should be encouraged to use alternative noisemakers such as mini trumpets and use of sound system,” Valte told state-run Radyo ng Bayan.
Valte cited that the emphasis on firecracker use prevention is on children, considering that New Year celebration injuries included children below 10 years old.
“We want to keep New Year revelry-related injuries at the minimum so we can start the new year right,” Valte added.
Likewise, Valte vowed that the police forces who will fire their service firearms in New Year festivities will face grave punishment.
“There’s already one victim of stray bullet this year, and we assure the public that our police force is pursuing those behind this incident. Those who will use their guns not in the line of duty will be held liable,” Valte said.
Valte then disclosed that the police forces are on high alert, as well as the local government units ahead of the New Year’s Eve festivities.
Last January, a stray bullet killed seven-year-old Stephanie Nicole Ella while the kid was watching fireworks fronting their residence in Caloocan City. LLANESCA T. PANTI