Novelty Lighters Shaped Like Guns Banned in N.Y.

ALBANY (AP) -

Those novelty lighters at checkout counters that look like guns, cars, toys and tiny fire extinguishers are being snuffed out in New York.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed a bill banning the sale of the items often displayed near cash registers. The lighters range from small toy-like bodies with whistles to larger M-16 military rifle replicas. Others are part of wrist watches or play music or flash lights.

Assemblyman Jeffrey Dinowitz, who sponsored the bill, said the goal is to keep the lighters away from children.

“These are the types of bills that don’t make headlines, but they are the types of things that can prevent a terrible tragedy from happening,” the Bronx Democrat said. “…There’s no reason for them to exist.”

Retailers will have 90 days to stop selling the impulse items. Manufacturers or importers will face penalties of up to $10,000; retailers can face a $500 civil penalty for each lighter.