Watusi (firework)

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A watusi is a type of Christmas firework that is popular in the Philippines. [1] Its ingredients are yellow phosphorus, potassium chlorate, potassium nitrate, and trinitrotoluene. [2] [3]

Philippines Republic in Southeast Asia

The Philippines, officially the Republic of the Philippines, is an archipelagic country in Southeast Asia. Situated in the western Pacific Ocean, it consists of about 7,641 islands that are categorized broadly under three main geographical divisions from north to south: Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao. The capital city of the Philippines is Manila and the most populous city is Quezon City, both part of Metro Manila. Bounded by the South China Sea on the west, the Philippine Sea on the east and the Celebes Sea on the southwest, the Philippines shares maritime borders with Taiwan to the north, Japan to the northeast, Vietnam to the west, Palau to the east, and Malaysia and Indonesia to the south.

Potassium chlorate chemical compound

Potassium chlorate is a compound containing potassium, chlorine and oxygen, with the molecular formula KClO3. In its pure form, it is a white crystalline substance. It is the most common chlorate in industrial use. It is used,

Potassium nitrate chemical compound

Potassium nitrate is a chemical compound with the chemical formula KNO3. It is an ionic salt of potassium ions K+ and nitrate ions NO3, and is therefore an alkali metal nitrate.

The ingredients in the firework are highly toxic, and ingestion can lead to painful death. [4] In particular, children are killed by watusi fireworks after sucking on them or mistaking them for sweets. [2] The yellow phosphorus, the most dangerous component of the watusi, may explode and rip apart the esophagus when ingested. [5] The Philippine Department of Health is attempting to forbid watusi [6] [2] , because it caused hundreds of children to die of phosphorus poisoning. [7]

Esophagus organ in vertebrates

The esophagus or oesophagus, commonly known as the food pipe or gullet, is an organ in vertebrates through which food passes, aided by peristaltic contractions, from the pharynx to the stomach. The esophagus is a fibromuscular tube, about 25 centimetres long in adults, which travels behind the trachea and heart, passes through the diaphragm and empties into the uppermost region of the stomach. During swallowing, the epiglottis tilts backwards to prevent food from going down the larynx and lungs. The word oesophagus is the Greek word οἰσοφάγος oisophagos, meaning "gullet".

Phosphorus Chemical element with atomic number 15

Phosphorus is a chemical element with the symbol P and atomic number 15. Elemental phosphorus exists in two major forms, white phosphorus and red phosphorus, but because it is highly reactive, phosphorus is never found as a free element on Earth. It has a concentration in the Earth's crust of about one gram per kilogram. With few exceptions, minerals containing phosphorus are in the maximally oxidized state as inorganic phosphate rocks.

Poisoning pathological condition caused by exposure, ingestion, injection or inhalation of a toxic substance

Poisoning is a condition or a process in which an organism becomes chemically harmed severely (poisoned) by a toxic substance or venom of an animal.

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Match device for lighting fires

A match is a tool for starting a fire. Typically, matches are made of small wooden sticks or stiff paper. One end is coated with a material that can be ignited by frictional heat generated by striking the match against a suitable surface. Wooden matches are packaged in matchboxes, and paper matches are partially cut into rows and stapled into matchbooks. The coated end of a match, known as the match "head", consists of a bead of active ingredients and binder; often colored for easier inspection. There are two main types of matches: safety matches, which can be struck only against a specially prepared surface, and strike-anywhere matches, for which any suitably frictional surface can be used.

Lye class of caustic compounds

A lye is a metal hydroxide traditionally obtained by leaching ashes, or a strong alkali which is highly soluble in water producing caustic basic solutions. "Lye" is commonly an alternative name of sodium hydroxide (NaOH) or historically potassium hydroxide (KOH), though the term "lye" refers most commonly to sodium hydroxide.

The Rizal Day bombings, also referred to as the December 30 bombings, were a series of bombings that occurred around Metro Manila in the Philippines on December 30, 2000. The explosions occurred in close succession within a span of a few hours. Twenty-two (22) fatalities were reported and around a hundred more suffered non-fatal injuries.

Firecracker small explosive device primarily designed to make noise

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University of the Philippines Manila state-related medical and research university located in Ermita, Manila, Philippines

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  1. Duncan Alexander McKenzie R.N. (11 August 2014). The Philippines: Dangers and Health Risks. Lulu.com. pp. 33–. ISBN   978-1-312-42625-2.
  2. 1 2 3 Wallerstein, C (1999). "Christmas firework "sweets" kill hundreds of children". BMJ (Clinical research ed.). 319 (7219): 1222. doi:10.1136/bmj.319.7219.1222a. PMID   10550079. (PMC link)
  3. "Warning issued vs watusi". Manila Standard. Philippine News Agency. 19 December 1994. Retrieved 4 January 2016.
  4. Nestor Etolle (2 January 2008). "Man commits suicide by ingesting watusi". philstar.com.
  5. "Watusi is dangerous". Manila Standard. Reuters. 12 December 1992. Retrieved 4 January 2016.
  6. "DOH exec eyes ban on children from buying watusi firecracker". GMA News Online. 28 December 2010.
  7. Michael I. Greenberg (2006). Disaster!: A Compendium of Terrorist, Natural, and Man-Made Catastrophes. Jones & Bartlett Learning. pp. 60–. ISBN   978-0-7637-3989-8.

See also