FAA instituting civil fines for laser violators

by Sara M. Langston with the blog faculty Source: AVweb The FAA, frustrated by a rise in incidents of lasers pointed at aircraft, said on Wednesday it will impose civil fines of up to $11,000 against violators. "Shining a laser into the cockpit of an aircraft is not a joke," said FAA Administrator Randy Babbitt. "These lasers can temporarily blind a pilot and make it impossible to safely land the aircraft, jeopardizing the safety of the passengers and people on the ground." The FAA said after a legal review (PDF), it has determined it will cite a rule against interfering with a flight crew performing its duties. The agency is also supporting pending legislation in Congress that would make it a criminal offense to point a laser at an aircraft. Pilots have reported more than 1,100 laser events already this year. [Full story]

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