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Questionable objects in caches


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Hello out there. Lately I've been finding Bic lighters in caches. I take them out as I don't feel they are appropriate. But reading the 'rules' there really is no mention of them. But with all the kids caching I just feel it's a bad idea. Any opinions?

If i see them i remove them.

 

I wouldn't want to leave anything that a child could find without an adult present and possibly hurt themselves or others.

 

I also remove pocket knifes if i find them.

 

I understand many items can potentially be dangerous. But I wouldn't want my kids to have matches or a lighter. Especially if an adult is not there.

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I see that one was left in one of our caches yesterday...I'm thinking about going out and taking from the cache. Yes, lighters are mentioned in the rules...maybe not directly, but since lighters CAN explode (especially if left in heat too long), that would qualify them as explosive IMHO (and I think explosives are mentioned...could be wrong).

 

Good to see you in the forums IATH!!

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Just to quote the applicable Cache Contents section of the Cache Listing Requirements/ Guidelines document:

 

Cache Contents

 

Use your common sense in most cases. Explosives, fireworks, ammo, lighters, knives (including pocket knives and multi-tools), drugs, alcohol or other illicit material shouldn't be placed in a cache. As always respect the local laws. Geocaching is a family activity and cache contents should be suitable for all ages.

 

Food items are ALWAYS a BAD IDEA. Animals have better noses than humans, and in some cases caches have been chewed through and destroyed because food items (or items that smell like food) are in the cache. Even the presence of mint flavored dental floss has led to destruction of one cache.

 

If the original cache contents list any of the above items or other questionable items, or if a cache is reported to have the questionable items, the cache may be disabled, and the owner of the cache will be contacted and asked to remove the questionable items before the cache is enabled.

(emphasis added)

 

One attention getter would be to ask your reviewer to write to the person leaving the lighters. I've done that once or twice in response to complaints. Even more dramatic, note that reviewers have the power to disable a cache if it has a lighter in it. Though I've only exercised that clause once (when a hider lied to me about removing a knife), imagine the impact if the reviewer disabled a few "long hike" caches hidden by outspoken cache owners, and asked those owners to make maintenance runs to remove the lighters before re-enabling their cache.

 

Recently while geocaching I found a travel bug that is a functional zippo lighter. Should I leave it in the next cache I visit, throw it away, or offer to mail it back to the owner?

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Mail it back tothe owner with an explanation.

 

Thanks Keystone, I'll write the guy and add those little tidbits! I'm sure it was just an oversight by the guy and it shouldn't be a problem!

 

IATH...the MWGB is in Kendalville In the 20th-22nd (July)...next Friday through Sunday! It will be a BLAST, and if you haven't already got a MEGA event icon, this is the perfect chance! Kendalville is approx 60 miles from here (Devil's Lake), there is camping available (if you'd like to make it a weekend and bring the youngsters)...I'll look up the waypoint for you!

 

edit to add: GCZRVY

Edited by Rockin Roddy
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Too bad, it'll be a blast! If you get a little free time, stop on in...I'll have a little something for you!

 

The knife would likely be OK, as long as the blade wasn't included. The blade is replaceable IATH...one just needs a razor blade. I'd be happy to find one! GREAT idea leaving gun locks!

 

IATH...we'll be hosting an event at HLG in Sept (to coincide with the festival the OTIH are hosting)...maybe you'll be able to make that! I'll send info when we publish!

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Rod; I'm Working that weekend :)

 

People also shouldn't leave so many feminine hygine products in caches ;)

 

i've never found any. there are a few time i wish i had. and they're also a handy first aid item for the rest of you. best defense to freely bleeding wounds. sterile, absorbent, and you can put your hand over it easily for compression.

 

it would be VERY difficult for a lighter to explode under the conditions of a cache. please don't take that as an endorsement to do so.

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Nope...and I wouldn't trust my life (or another's) with a chance either. It mentions right on the lighter not to expose to extreme heat...I'll follow that! But thinking about it...I have left lighters in my vehicle at times...even in the intense heat of Vegas.

 

but we stray from the topic on hand....

Edited by Rockin Roddy
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Lets face it. GEocaching is here to stay and the children are involved. Do you know that the Girl and Boy scouts have badges for geocaching? My Daughter went to a christian camp and earned an Honor in Geocaching there. In this area most of the caching teams are family groups with preteen kids. We need to make other cachers aware of safety for the kids. Knives, lighters, fireworks, sharps of any, medicines (YUP I've seen that too.) have got to be kept out of the hands of the kids (I'll get off my soap box now) ;)

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In regards to lighters I believe the fact should be is that there are kids (under 18) that are into geocaching and would you leave alcohol in a cache? No, and why? Because you have to be at least 21 and over to buy it. In Arizona from what I understand is that anyone under the age of 18 is not allowed to buy a lighter. So if you leave a lighter in a cache and someone under the age of 18 takes it, then you are contributing to minors.

Edited by JDubPooch
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Yes, lighters are mentioned in the rules...maybe not directly, but since lighters CAN explode (especially if left in heat too long), that would qualify them as explosive IMHO (and I think explosives are mentioned...could be wrong).

 

I don't know about lighters exploding. People leave them in hot cars all the time and I haven't read about hundreds of cars going up in flames every July. Heck there has been one in the glove compartment of my black car with a black interior for going on 4 years now. And I doubt a cache hidden under a stump, in a hollow tree or a rock crevice gets nearly as hot as the inside of my car when it's sitting in the sun.

 

Anyway, the guidelines do directly address lighters (but not matches for some reason).

Edited by briansnat
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i don't buy the kid argument. a child mature enough to cache alone is mature enough not to be stupid with a lighter. a child caching with a parent has adequate supervision.

 

i still don't think it's a good idea to leave lighters and such in caches, but i've seen a lot of arguments that exaggerate the dangers. would it be bad to take the conservative line "just 'coz"? it's better to be uniformly safe. no need to go farther.

 

we wish the sport to project an image of "suitable for general audiences" rather than "player discretion advised" or even "mature audiences only". that's all.

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i don't buy the kid argument. a child mature enough to cache alone is mature enough not to be stupid with a lighter. a child caching with a parent has adequate supervision.

Really? And a kid mature enough to stay at home while the parents go on vacation is mature enough not the through the biggest (my parents are out of town for the week and I have the house all to myself) party of the year?;)

Edited by JDubPooch
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Feminine hygeine products! EWW!! I wouldn't use one found in a cache even if desperately needed and double-wrapped. That just strikes me as icky.

 

I have found that I personally view candles as a questionable object though. Maybe part of the reason is because we're in the high desert. But those things can get melty and when you open up an ammo box, ugh! Whiff of extra-perfume! NOT something you want to smell while caching.

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4 years...will it still light? I wondered about the matches not being mentioned but...also...check my edited log above...I thought of that after posting.

 

What if the parents are busy looking in another area while the kids make the find flask? Too many variables to discount the kid argument!

Would it be any different (using your argument) for a knife?? I mean surely you're standing over the youngsters constantly while on the hunt...right?

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did you guys even GET the part where i said i thought it was a bad idea to leave thses things in caches, or did you just hit the "reply" button immediately following the thing about not buying the kid argument?

 

and parents who worry about what their kids find in caches can make rules that kids don't open the box without a parent present. if you're that worried about you kid's ability to tolerate finding a box with a lighter in it while you're a hundred feet away, you have bigger problems than a lighter in a box.

 

it's still a bad idea to leave these things in caches. i still don't buy phrasing it in terms of explosions or the chiiiiildren.

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Yes, lighters are mentioned in the rules...maybe not directly, but since lighters CAN explode (especially if left in heat too long), that would qualify them as explosive IMHO (and I think explosives are mentioned...could be wrong).

 

I don't know about lighters exploding. People leave them in hot cars all the time and I haven't read about hundreds of cars going up in flames every July. Heck there has been one in the glove compartment of my black car with a black interior for going on 4 years now. And I doubt a cache hidden under a stump, in a hollow tree or a rock crevice gets nearly as hot as the inside of my car when it's sitting in the sun.

The lighter thing is a myth! I saw an episode of Mythbusters where absolutely could not get a lighter to blow up! ;)
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The lighter thing is a myth! I saw an episode of Mythbusters where absolutely could not get a lighter to blow up! ;)

 

I have been very close to a "lighter explosion" and they are quite powerful.

 

While in high school I worked evenings as a janitor at a newspaper and we had to roll the paper around, it came in giant rolls that looked like TP but they weighed a lot (tons). The rolls moved easily but given their mass they had tremendous inertia and things pinched between two rolls or between the roll and the floor could easily be hurt, crushed or broken. On one occcasion I pushed a paper roll over a dropped Bic lighter, the steel part was facing the roll and was the first part compressed, the valve was crushed and as the roll continued forward the plastic lighter body exploded, it was very impressive with bits of plastic flying quite some distance, a small dent was made in the paper roll but only a few layers were hurt.

Even though I haven't seen any giant rolls of paper while out caching I still take lighters from caches. :)

 

I started removing all the crayons from my caches after a local cache was ruined when a package of crayons melted on a hot day last year, before that happened I used to put crayons in my caches, go figure.

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did you guys even GET the part where i said i thought it was a bad idea to leave thses things in caches, or did you just hit the "reply" button immediately following the thing about not buying the kid argument?

No flask, I had to read it all to know what to cut out... Please don't think I am trying to argue. I try to keep my post to being helpful and I do not like to argue with people. I believe the forums are for people to share info and help each by shareing their opinions. Some people it seems though only post on the forums because they like to argue with people. ;)

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Never throw a ZIPPO away. ;)

 

I agree - what if the Zippo doesn't have lighter fluid (or maybe even remove the flint) - does that change anything?

 

(BTW, to clarify, considering I just read my own message with my Avitar to the left - I'm a volunteer fireman - children shouldn't be playing with matches or lighters at all... but they shouldn't be playing with a lot of things that I have found in caches in the past... so if it is rendered "safe" (they would have to obtain or buy lighter fluid and flints, in my example, neither of which are normally sold to kids), does that change anything?)

Edited by FireRef
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The lighter thing is a myth! I saw an episode of Mythbusters where absolutely could not get a lighter to blow up! :laughing:

I have been very close to a "lighter explosion" and they are quite powerful.

 

While in high school I worked evenings as a janitor at a newspaper and we had to roll the paper around, it came in giant rolls that looked like TP but they weighed a lot (tons). The rolls moved easily but given their mass they had tremendous inertia and things pinched between two rolls or between the roll and the floor could easily be hurt, crushed or broken. On one occcasion I pushed a paper roll over a dropped Bic lighter, the steel part was facing the roll and was the first part compressed, the valve was crushed and as the roll continued forward the plastic lighter body exploded, it was very impressive with bits of plastic flying quite some distance, a small dent was made in the paper roll but only a few layers were hurt.

Even though I haven't seen any giant rolls of paper while out caching I still take lighters from caches. ;)

I haven't seen any giant rolls of paper in a cache either. :) If someone did leave one, they'd have leave it leaning against the lamp post next to the cache.... :laughing: Edited by TrailGators
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i don't buy the kid argument. a child mature enough to cache alone is mature enough not to be stupid with a lighter. a child caching with a parent has adequate supervision.

Its not about kids caching alone!

 

Its about kids that arent caching finding it alone! ;)

 

If toddlers and young children are wandering the woods alone, I think finding a geocache with a lighter should be the least of his parents worries.

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Recently while geocaching I found a travel bug that is a functional zippo lighter. Should I leave it in the next cache I visit, throw it away, or offer to mail it back to the owner?

 

I vote for taking the flint out, *and if its been soaked in fluid, the sponge material too) then releasing it again.

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i don't buy the kid argument. a child mature enough to cache alone is mature enough not to be stupid with a lighter. a child caching with a parent has adequate supervision.

Its not about kids caching alone!

 

Its about kids that arent caching finding it alone! ;)

 

If toddlers and young children are wandering the woods alone, I think finding a geocache with a lighter should be the least of his parents worries.

True. I really wasn't thinking of toddlers or small children. Maybe a 10-12 year old. Only you can prevent forest fires. :)

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Recently while geocaching I found a travel bug that is a functional zippo lighter. Should I leave it in the next cache I visit, throw it away, or offer to mail it back to the owner?

 

I vote for taking the flint out, *and if its been soaked in fluid, the sponge material too) then releasing it again.

 

But what if a child finds it, reinstalls the flint and wick and sets the woods on fire?

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Recently while geocaching I found a travel bug that is a functional zippo lighter. Should I leave it in the next cache I visit, throw it away, or offer to mail it back to the owner?

 

I vote for taking the flint out, *and if its been soaked in fluid, the sponge material too) then releasing it again.

 

Complete agreement here...remove the flint, it's easy to do, and if it's been filled, remove the wadding, too.

 

As for lighters, as long as they aren't left in the middle of Death Valley and they are the ones with the childproof little latch thingie, I've not got a major problem with them and I cache with my kids. Matches are a no-no, though, as well as lighters that have no child lock.

 

Although yesterday I would have given my eye teeth for matches, lighter, even a fricken flint in the cache we found!

 

I was SUCH a good mamma, packed a one time grill, hot dogs, chips, dessert, hot dog bread, ketchup, plastic utensils, cold sodas and even a cold beer for hubby to enjoy at the top of the mountain we were going after a cache on...was gonna be perfect, perfect evening caching and with the family, weather was great, sunset gorgeous, even a rainbow....

 

Hard to light the stupid grill without something that makes fire, grrrr :laughing: ! Felt so stupid, he's not gonna let me live it down, either, hehehe... so, we ate the chips, dessert, sodas/beer, and came home and fried the hot dogs in a skillet on the stove *sighs*

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Recently while geocaching I found a travel bug that is a functional zippo lighter. Should I leave it in the next cache I visit, throw it away, or offer to mail it back to the owner?

 

I vote for taking the flint out, *and if its been soaked in fluid, the sponge material too) then releasing it again.

 

But what if a child finds it, reinstalls the flint and wick and sets the woods on fire?

 

Then you're screwed anyway. If a child is that smart and can get the replacement flint and wick and get them installed properly, you've got more than a forest fire to worry about, lol! :laughing:

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