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Under this bill’s proposed statutory terms, any “any nonstationary and transportable device designed or intended to emit or propel a burning stream of combustible or flammable gas or liquid a distance of at least two feet” (emphasis added) would be considered a regulated flamethrowing device and would be illegal to sell, use, or possess without a permit issued by the State Fire Marshal.

And if it is enacted, AB 1949 would also hold that a manufacturer of a “flamethrowing device” is strictly liable for damages caused by such a device, including “costs incurred by the local or state governments or damages sought by victims or family members of victims, in addition to any other damages available under existing law.” That strikes a blow to equity and the principles of liability and negligence, and, moreover, singles out one industry for especially dis-favorable treatment.

Indeed, AB 1949 is so broad that it could (and would) be applied to an incredible number of existing devices, including common farm implements, hand torches, welding and metal fabrication tools, roofing equipment, heaters, and just about anything larger than a cigarette lighter.

The potential for abuse with AB 1949 is almost impossible to overstate. And, in fact, AB 1949 is itself a manifestation of legislative abuse. This bill should be torched.

Tell your legislators that you oppose AB 1949 and send them an email today.