INSPECTION. PNP chief General Rodolfo Azurin (fifth from right) leads the inspection of the  firecrackers and pyrotechnic devices stores in Bocaue, Bulacan on Thursday (Dec. 8, 2022). The move is part of the intensified campaign “Ingat Paputok 2023.” (PNA photo by Manny Balbin) 

MANILA – With the New Year's Eve revelry just a few weeks away, Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Gen. Rodolfo S. Azurin Jr. has reminded the public not to patronize illegal firecrackers as it could endanger lives.

He also warned illegal traders about the PNPs continued crackdown against illegal firecrackers that are harmful to the people.

On Thursday, Azurin, along with government officials, inspected stores selling firecrackers at Dinglasan Compound in Barangay Turo, Bocaue, Bulacan.

Azurin was accompanied by Bulacan Governor Daniel R. Fernando, Vice Governor Alexis C. Castro, Geraldine M. Panlilio, Regional Director of Department of labor and Employment, Mayor Eduardo J. Villanueva, and other members of Pyrotechnics Regulatory Board (PRB).

“We are conducting this inspection to assure the public that the necessary provisions under Republic Act 7183 on regulating, manufacturing, and distributing firecrackers are strictly implemented to ensure safe and peaceful celebration of the Yuletide season," he said.

The inspection is also to make sure that health safety protocols are being observed especially in the pyro marketplace, and to help promote the pyro industry by informing the public that fireworks are not totally banned in the country.

Azurin and the rest of the members of inspection team checked every stall if they have the necessary permit to operate, fire protection device such as fire extinguisher, as well the size, weight and brand of the items followed the existing requirements.

Meanwhile, the PNP chief has ordered their anti-cybercrime group (ACG) to continuously patrol the Internet against individuals selling illegal firecrackers from abroad.

"First of all, firecrackers coming from abroad are illegal and not allowed. So, our ACG is continuously conducting cyber patrolling so as to catch the perpetrators of those selling online," he said.

"All imported finished product, definitely they are illegal and the unlabeled locally made firecrackers, pyrotechnics, also illegal," the PNP chief said. (PNA)