Some Cebu City firecracker vendors not happy with new selling zone at SRP
CEBU CITY, Philippines –The firecracker vendors in Cebu City said they want to go back to their original spots at the middle of the South Road Properties (SRP) in the next firecracker season.
Vendors said the number of customers decreased because they could not find the stalls in its new spot, which is along the Mambaling extension of the SRP, near the S. Damazo Bridge.
Jocelyn, one of the vendors, said the new spot brought lesser customers than in the past year because most of their customers came from the southern towns, specifically from Talisay City.
The new spot in Barangay Mambaling was not easily accessible to the old customers and although it is accessible by foot through the N. Bacalso Highway, the customers still have not increased.
Furthermore, since Jocelyn’s stall is in the innermost part of the firecracker zone, these last stalls do not get the bulk of the customers because the parking lot was placed at the front of the area.
“Dili na molakaw ang mga customers diri sa layo kay ilang sakyanan naa ra didto. Alkansi kaayo mi. (The people would no longer go to us because their cars are parked far. We are at a disadvantage),” said Jocelyn.
Unlike Jocelyn, Ernie Pardillo, another vendor, said the new spot is better for business because there are more potential customers in the area.
He admits the customers have decreased, but he said it was just the effect of moving the new firecracker zone.
Pardillo said he would recommend to the city government to keep them in the area in the next firecracker season as consistency would allow customers to get used to the new spot.
Changing the spot next year may further confuse customers, further decreasing profit.
The Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP) in Cebu City said most of the 17 stalls were compliant to the regulations of the BFP and the city with the safe selling of firecrackers including the putting up of signs against testing and smoking within the firecracker zone.
Fire Inspector Asraf Grar of BFP Cebu City said that at least two stalls have been closed down for selling prohibited firecrackers including picolo, watusi, super lolo, among others.
The BFP said prohibited firecrackers are dangerous and will be confiscated from sellers. Authorized sellers are in danger of being closed down with permits withdrawn.
The firecracker zone in Cebu City will only be open until the midnight of New Year’s eve. /bmjo
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