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NC5 Investigates: Consumer Alert

Novelty Lighter Hazards Demonstrated To Lawmakers

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State Rep. Charles Curtiss State Rep. Charles Curtiss

A NewsChannel 5 Investigation has prompted lawmakers to take action to protect children.

Our investigation showed how dangerous novelty lighters can be in the hands of a child.

They look and sound just like toys -- and the investigation found that children have little trouble making them work.

On Tuesday afternoon, state lawmakers were shocked to see how easy it is to confuse them for toys.

The committee then unanimously approved legislation that would ban these lighters in Tennessee.

"It's actually scary what we've got out there in the market and when you think of the thousands of them we've already got out there," said the bill's sponsor, state Rep. Charles Curtiss, a Sparta Democrat.

"Now we're going to be able to stop that flow, but we've still got thousands of them in homes across the state."

The state Fire Marshal's office has launched a program to educate parents about the dangers of these lighters.

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