The FBI has begun a program for deterring people from pointing lasers at aircraft, which is a felony punishable by five years in jail, or more if the laser shooting person causes an air crash.
Aiming a laser pointer at an aircraft is a serious matter and a violation of federal law. It is important that people understand that this is a criminal act with potentially deadly repercussions.
The program includes a campaign to educate the public about the dangers of “lasing” that will operate for 60 days in twelve FBI field offices where laser strikes against aircraft have been occurring most frequently. Part of the program is the offering of a reward up to $10,000 for information leading to the arrest of any individual who intentionally aims a laser at an aircraft.
Laser light directly into an eye can also cause damage – in the air or ground. Since December 2013, the FAA has documented at least 35 incidents where pilots required medical attention after a laser strike. In 2013, 3,960 laser strike incidents occurred involving aircraft.
After the FAA Modernization and Reform Act of 2012 was passed, it is a federal felony to knowingly point the beam of a laser at an aircraft.
The FBI offices that are participating in the program are in Albuquerque, Chicago, Cleveland, Houston, Los Angeles, New York City, Philadelphia, Phoenix, Sacramento, San Antonio, San Juan, and the Washington Field Office. If you have information about a lasing incident or see someone pointing a laser at an aircraft, call your local FBI office or dial 911.
With laser sight systems for firearms becoming increasingly popular, in both red and green laser, it is important that firearm owners who use them realize the danger of using lasers in a manner that may cause temporary blindness or permanent eye problems when point directly to the eyes of an individual and certainly be dangerous to point it as an aircraft.
Laser pointers and sight systems have become useful, as with many devices and firearms, owners should be responsible and conduct themselves in a safe and responsible manner.
I for one know about laser injury first hand. When an individual, when laser pointers first came out, thought it would be funny to stand about 2-3 feet from me and point the laser into my eyes; I no longer had good night vision and had to quit driving over-the-road because it was too dangerous to drive a rig (most of my driving was done in the dark hours because I hauled a reefer) without full night vision.
Folks, be careful with those things. Cats (and dogs) like to chase laser lights, and it is fun to watch - but do not point it directly into their eyes. (See video at bottom of page)
Other animals, besides dogs and cats are interested in laser lights ...
And while looking for the proper video for this article, I came across this collection of some of the crazy things our pets do and marvelous things they can be taught - sorry for the sidetrack ...