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Muntinlupa aims for zero firecracker victims

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The city government of Muntinlupa targets zero firecracker-related injuries and prepares to apprehend motorists using open-mufflers during the holidays.

Muntinlupa Public Information Officer Tez Navarro said the City Government aims to have zero firecracker-related casualty when city residents welcome the New Year as it beefs up the implementation of Oplan Iwas Paputok campaign.

Navarro said the City Health Office recorded a significant decrease in casualties from 13 cases in 2016 to six in 2017, and reduced to two in 2018 upon the implementation of the ban. Local hospitals including Ospital ng Muntinlupa are on standby and have installed fast lanes to provide emergency medical assistance to victims of firecracker blasts.

Mayor Jaime Fresnedi ordered the local Peace and Order Council to intensify inspections on marketplaces to confiscate illegal firecrackers and apprehend violators.

On December 23, the Muntinlupa Traffic Management Bureau and MMDA led an operation in Alabang Viaduct to apprehend vendors selling firecrackers and conducted an information drive.

The City Council passed Ordinance No. 14-092 prohibiting the display and distribution of firecrackers in Muntinlupa as part of its efforts to reduce cases of casualties and harmful effects of pyrotechnic devices to health and the environment.

Apprehended individuals using firecrackers will be fined with P1,000 up to P5,000 penalty. While commercial establishments selling firecrackers may face revocation of permit and license to operate in pursuant to penalties provided in the ordinance.

Further, mall owners or similar establishments may organize fireworks displays in designated areas upon securing a permit from Bureau of Fire Protection and the Philippine National Police.

The city government is also set to organize a motorcade on December 30 to launch its Iwas Paputok information drive. During the motorcade, local officials will distribute alternative noisemaking devices (torotot) in District 1 and 2 barangays. The motorcade will begin at Muntinlupa City Hall Quadrangle and will conclude in South Station, Alabang with a boodle fight event.

While alternative noise-making activities are encouraged, MTMB warned motorists that the use of aftermarket mufflers, or removal of such, which emit excessive loud noise causing disturbances in is prohibited as per City Ordinance 04-022 or the Muntinlupa City Traffic Code.

The local government has coordinated with PNP and LTO to put up checkpoints and conduct monitoring surveillance on major thoroughfares, including secondary roads, for the apprehension of revelers with open-mufflers.

Mayor Jaime Fresnedi urges residents to use alternative noise-making instruments and not to patronize firecrackers and open-pipe mufflers. The local exec encouraged Muntinlupa residents to celebrate the New Year’s Eve safely.

Muntinlupa residents are also encouraged to report violators to authorities. Locals may contact the following offices: MTMB (831-9884), PNP Muntinlupa (862-2611 / 09083770084), BFP Muntinlupa (842-2201), Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office (925-4351), and Ospital ng Muntinlupa (771-0457).

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