Pilot blinded by Blenheim laser
Tue, 28 Aug 2012 8:23a.m.
Police are again searching for someone who may have been shining a laser beam at landing aircraft, this time at Blenheim Airport.
The pilot of an Air New Zealand flight had a green laser beam hit him in his left eye as he flew over the town on the approach to landing about 6.30pm yesterday, Blenheim police said.
The pilot was blinded in the one eye for a short time but was able to land without incident.
Two passengers on the flight also reported seeing the laser, which appeared to be coming from the Blenheim residential area.
Two subsequent flights landed without reporting any lasers.
Shining a laser beam at an aircraft was an incredibly dangerous thing to do, Constable Michelle Stagg said.
"We take these sorts of things really seriously, and we are really keen to find out who was involved in doing this," she told NZ Newswire.
Police were unable to search the area immediately because of the delay in reporting the incident, she said.
Lasers had been shone at landing aircraft in Blenheim before, but it was uncommon, she said.
Shining a laser beam at aircraft attracts a charge of endangering transport, which carries a maximum prison term of 14 years.
Auckland teenager Pravikash Chandra, is awaiting sentencing on four such charges after shining a green laser at aircraft landing at Auckland International Airport.
He then shone the laser at the police helicopter sent to find him. All four pilots suffered temporary flash blindness.
The judge has ordered more information on the type of laser the 18-year-old used.
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28/08/2012 12:34:37 p.m.
c hristine wrote:
people who do that need to see a psychiatrist. Maybe lasers should be made illegal.
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