Press Release
February 4, 2009

Noynoy seeks inquiry over explosives handling in Cavite fireworks factory incident

"The massive damage caused by the incident at the Starmaker Factory that killed 6 people and supposedly injured 70 others deserves a public explanation from concerned parties that allowed such factory to operate despite mounting evidence that it was remiss in its duties to properly and safely conduct its business."

"Under Section 7(a) of Republic Act 7183 or An Act Regulating the Sale, Manufacture, Distribution and Use of Firecrackers and Other Pyrotechnic Devices, a zone shall be designed by the local government unit where a manufacturing complex may be established. The outer perimeter of this zone shall be at least three hundred (300) meters away from the nearest residential units. If the proprietors of the said factory did comply with the said law, why then was the plant set up only a few meters away from houses?"

"Section 7(b)(2) of the same states that 'the warehouse must be at least fifty (50) meters away from any processing station of the complex'. The Bureau of Fire Protection, in its preliminary investigation, found that the chemical storage area at the factory was only 5 to 7 meters away from the storage area for the finished products."

"There are established guidelines on how to safely operate a fireworks factory, which a private entity with vast resources such as Starmaker Factory could have complied with. Its failure to do so leads us to concerned authorities that seem to have failed in their responsibility to strictly administer rules on the safe handling of dangerous explosives."

"The loss of life, injuries and damage to property could have been greatly minimized if the abovementioned regulations were duly enforced. Someone is responsible for this negligence and the Senate should investigate the matter to determine why this happened to prevent future occurrences."

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