Despite FAA Warnings, People Keep Firing Lasers at Planes in the Sky

Flex Air Charters Corporate Air Charter News, Corporate Air Charters

As of October 2021, the FAA has received 7,186 reports of laser strikes against aircraft in the sky. This has been the case despite warnings by the air regulation agency about the dangers of this practice.

It seems that some people just can’t stop themselves from firing high-powered lasers at planes. Recent reports show that the practice has not only not diminished as a result of FAA warnings about its danger; there’s been a dramatic spike in incidents. As a result, the FAA released yet another warning to the public this past Monday.

In the three weeks after the agency’s initial warning, a wave of new reports by numerous additional pilots occurred as they complained about their airplanes and helicopters being struck by beams from the ground.

As a result, the FAA’s previous tally of incidents, which sat at 6,723 as of October 8th, then jumped up to 7,186 as of their more recent published count.

This recent uptick is in fact only the newest expression of a much longer trend. According to the data visualization software used by the agency to map the trends for this activity, laser attacks have increased by 148% during the last decade.

The visualizations also indicate that incidents slowly increase throughout a given week before peaking on Fridays and Saturdays.

It’s worth noting that the firing of laser beams at aircraft in operation is in fact a federal offense and that the FAA can apply fines of as much as $11,000 for a single violation or up to $30,800 against repeat offenders.

According to FAA Regional Administrator, Micheal O’Har4a, “When a laser comes into the cockpit, it can brightly illuminate. It takes the pilot’s focus off the instruments, presenting hazards to the passengers on the board and on the ground,”

O’Hara’s understandably worried about the growing trend and how its specific patterns could cause possibly major accidents.

As the FAA supervisor explains in relation to just one Florida city, “When I looked at the Jacksonville data over the last two years, 20 of the 42 incidents occurred below 3,000 feet, so that’s obviously a critical phase of flight when the pilot should be focused on their departure route or landing pattern at the airports,”

The FAA has also noticed that the numbers of laser striking incidents against aircraft are highest in three states in particular. These in descending order of frequency are California, Texas, and Florida.

While the number of laser strikes has been steadily climbing year over year, officials at the FAA are still unsure about its particular causes. O’Harra however speculates that it might be due to the ever-greater availability of especially powerful outdoor laser generating devices.

Passengers with a fear of commercial flight should take some comfort knowing that despite the laser beams, plane crashes are exceptionally rare in general. Furthermore, they’re almost unheard of because of this strange laser hobby.

Frequent fliers who want even more control over their travel experience might also consider the inherently more comfortable and safer options available through private and corporate air charters such as Flex Air Aviation. These offer a wholly different level of comfort and convenience compared to commercial passenger flights.

Photo Credit: Mediengestalter