Explosion of confiscated fireworks leaves 27 injured

ZAMBOANGA, PHILIPPINES – At least 27 people were injured in Zamboanga, Philippines, when a pile of confiscated illegal fireworks exploded during an attempted controlled destruction by police. The explosion occurred near a marine firing range on Monday afternoon, causing damage to nearby houses, hotels, and the Zamboanga International Airport.

Two individuals who were present at the scene of the explosion are reported to be in serious condition following the blast, which also resulted in minor damage to the airport’s passenger terminal. Despite the damage of the aftermath of the explosion, no flight delays occurred.

The force of the explosion shattered windows up to nearly two miles away, illustrating the magnitude of the blast.

This incident followed the June 29 accidental explosion of a warehouse storing these fireworks, which resulted in five fatalities. Despite two prior successful controlled detonations, the latest attempt catastrophically failed, prompting Zamboanga’s mayor to initiate an investigation into the cause.

This event underscores persistent issues with fireworks use in the Philippines, where many people believe that loud celebrations drive away misfortune. Despite reduced usage due to governmental regulations and economic challenges, the tradition remains strong in several regions.