An OPP helicopter in Elgin County was hit with a laser during a training exercise on Monday.
Police say the flight crew responded appropriately to avoid the laser strike preventing any permanent injury to the crew or impact to flight operations. “Laser attacks on aircraft are a serious and growing concern. The OPP take these actions very seriously and if the person(s) responsible are identified, they will be held accountable for their ac tions.” said OPP Deputy Commissioner Brad Blair, Provincial Commander of Traffic Safety and Operational Support.
The number of incidents of lasers being pointed at aircraft is on the rise according to Transport Canada. In 2015, there were almost 600 reported incidents in Canada.
Pointing a laser at an aircraft can create glare that distracts or temporarily blinds the pilots, putting passengers, as well as people on the ground, at serious risk.
It is also a criminal offence to point a laser at an aircraft. There are fines up to $100,000 or 5 years in prison – or both.
If anyone has information with regards to this specific incident, please contact the OPP.