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NY Assembly Bans Novelty Lighters (Seriously?)

Flickr: cigarette lighter

As the New York Assembly closed down for the summer several items sat in front of them for voting. One of them included the legalization of professional Mixed Martial Arts fighting (UFC) in the state; that was not approved. Another bill in front of them, that seemed more important, to ban novelty lighters in the state, did pass though.

Yep. Novelty Lighters. Banned.

How was this a pressing issue?

Consumer groups and fire officials were pressing the Assembly to pass the bill that would make it illegal to sell novelty lighters that look likeĀ miniature toys, such as automobiles, tractors or popular cartoon characters and are also frequently equipped with musical sounds and flashing lights.

The bill came from reports that claim novelty lighters are the result of many fatal fires in the nation because children think they are toys, begin playing with them, and the result ends badly.

My question: Where are the parents to tell their kid not to play with those lighters and/or why did they not keep them away from a child’s reach? Is there not a warning for that?

A provision to bill allows law enforcement to seize the banned lighters and impose fines or penalties on those selling them. There will also be a special hotline for people to call and report those breaking the new law. (You know, because the police have nothing better to do then bust people for novelty lighters).

Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver told News10:

These lighters may appear harmless because they look like toys, but in reality they are flame-producing devices that children like to play with. This is a combination that spells disaster, and it must be eliminated. Our bill would prohibit the sale of these lethal items. They are a public safety hazard and a threat to the lives of children.

Once again, where are the parents to follow the direction on the label of “Keep Out Of Reach Of Children”. What’s next? Ban coffee because of the safety hazard of possibly burning yourself even if there is a warning?


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