SpaceX founder Elon Musk has a tendency for taking the world’s breath away with his ambitious tech projects. However, his latest bizarre consumer product, a mechanical device that spews a long stream of fire, is not one of them.
Musk, the CEO of SpaceX and Tesla, created quite a stir when he had first touted his plans to sell flamethrowers in December of last year.
"Much like a roller coaster, this is designed to be thrilling without danger," said a company spokesman of the device, which Musk reportedly manufactured to raise funds for his futuristic tunneling business, The Boring Company.
The product went up for sale and reportedly sold out in four days in the beginning of this year.
On May 27, he tweeted he would start delivering flamethrowers at “pick up parties.”
Initially, people thought he was joking, however, skeptics didn’t have to wait for long to find out that he wasn't.
Thousands of customers were invited to the company’s headquarters in Los Angeles to personally collect the first batch.
First 1000 Boring Company Flamethrowers being picked up today! pic.twitter.com/hBMp5fGzAB— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) June 9, 2018
A number of tech nerds, pyromaniacs and other enthusiasts gathered at the SpaceX, to get their hands on a device that shoot flames four feet from the nozzle and are largely believed to work like large propane blowtorches.
“I love fire. I play with torches and gasoline all the time so this is the ultimate toy that I’ll play with for all my life. I’ve bought a bunch of wood. I’m ready,”saidan IT company owner who was amongst the thousands who attended Musk’s party.
For obvious reasons, many questioned the need of such a fire-emanating device. But Musk, who is known for making bizarre statements, responded to the criticism with a cheeky answer.
Terms & conditions for “Not-a-Flamethrower”— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) June 9, 2018
Please use as directed to avoid unintentionally burning things down. For simple & concise instructions, we drew upon wisdom in great Dr Seuss book “Green Eggs and Ham”. #ThrowFlamesResponsiblypic.twitter.com/kgj8W8EOLJ
While buyers were collecting their flamethrowers in Los Angeles, a brush fire in Newhall, near Santa Clarita grew to 175 acres and forced mandatory evacuations in several neighborhoods.
#SouthFire, 160 acres with zero containment. MANDATORY EVACUATIONS!— LA County Sheriff's (@LASDHQ) June 10, 2018
ALL streets south of Maple St. up to Wildwood Canyon Rd.:
CALGROVE BLVD/VALLEY ST
HASKELL VISTA LN
GREEN CREST DR pic.twitter.com/giL3nmOMxD
Democratic state Assemblyman Miguel Santiago of Los Angeles called the device in question, “incredibly insensitive, dangerous and most definitely not funny.”
Nevertheless, the popularity of flamethrowers continue to soar as, according to a CNN report, the devices were already being offered at eBay for several hundred dollars. The manual alone was on sale for $250.
Banner Image Credits: REUTERS/Joe Skipper