Delta Power Equipment Corp., manufacturer of the iconic Unisaw table saw, has put up a notice on their website (www.deltamachinery.com) warning about proposed legislation in California that would require flesh-sensing safety equipment on all table saws sold in that state.

Introduced by California Assemblyman Das Williams (D-Santa Barbara), Assembly Bill 2218 would ban the sale of any new table saw in the state after Jan. 1, 2015, if the saw is not equipped with “active injury mitigation technology.”

Delta is urging people to contact California legislators to oppose the bill. “As you have seen in many cases before, California legislative decisions quickly pass to other states, and most products are designed for national distribution, so if this law passes, it may affect the design of products sold in every state,” said a Delta spokesman.

The safety system that would be required under the proposed California law is defined in the bill as “technology to detect contact with, or dangerous proximity between, a hand or finger and the teeth of the blade above the table top of a table saw, and to prevent the blade from cutting the hand or finger deeper than one-eighth of an inch when the hand or finger approaches any portion of the blade above the table top at a speed of one foot per second from any direction and along any path.”

The only such technology that currently exists is the patented SawStop system.

The legislation also provides for temporary deactivation of the safety system “so that a saw can cut material which would otherwise be detected as a person.”

Interestingly, the legislation defines a table saw in part as having a 12-inch blade or less, thus exempting larger blade industrial saws.

The bill would make a seller who sells a saw not equipped with the device subject to a civil fine of up to $5,000 per sale.

Delta’s notice about the proposed legislation urges people to contact the bill’s author (http://asmdc.org/members/a35/) or other California legislators (http://192.234.213.69/amapsearch/). “Even if you aren’t in California, California needs to hear from you,” says Delta’s notice.

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