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Examples of novelty lighters collected by New York officials. (The Spokesman-Review)
Examples of novelty lighters collected by New York officials. (The Spokesman-Review)

Washington bans novelty lighters

OLYMPIA — Lighters that look like toys will soon be banned from being sold in the state under a measure signed by Gov. Chris Gregoire.

Gregoire signed the measure into law Wednesday. It takes effect in July.

Under the new law, any lighter that has flashing lights, makes musical sounds, or could be mistaken as a toy is banned. Disposable lighters with decals and artwork are exempt.

Retail stores that continue to sell the lighters will first be issued a warning, but subsequent violations will garner a $250 fine.

Lawmakers took up the issue after numerous house fires were started by children who were playing with the toy-like incendiary devices.



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