Pandemic Cuts, Doesn’t End Laser Strikes

If there’s a bright side to the effect of the pandemic on aviation it’s that laser strikes on aircraft have been cut in half in Canada. There were still 236 reported attacks in 2020 less than half the number reported in the years leading up. The targets may also have changed. While airline crews mostly report strikes, small aircraft are also in the sights of the criminals shining the lights. Moncton Flight College has reported at least three laser attacks on training aircraft in the past year.

Getting caught is rare but it does happen and when it does the perpetrators can have a big lesson coming. They can be fined as much as $100,000 and go to jail for up to five years. Transport Canada issued comprehensive rules banning the possession of lasers near 530 airports and in the metropolitan areas of Vancouver, Toronto and Montreal.