Thursday, November 12, 2015

Pointing a laser at aircraft is a serious crime

Here’s an elementary safety post about laser pointers.

In New York, a man was arrested for pointing a high-powered green laser, illegal to own but acquired online, at several helicopters, including one for WNBC, New York City’s NBC-owned station.  WNBC story is here.

This is a federal offense that can result in 20 years in prison and a $250000 fine.  But the outcome could be a helicopter or plane crash, and permanent blinding of the pilot. No one was injured in this incident.

But incidents were reported in several other cities.  This story is developing in the media rapidly. USA Today reports a 17% increase in incidents nationwide despite tougher laws, story by Bart Jansen here.
There would be a question as to whether the little LED flashlights, which look good on train sets, could pose a problem.

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