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 Post subject: Even a Laser from thousands of feet below can blur vision
PostPosted: Thu May 15, 2008 3:24 pm 

Joined: Tue Feb 26, 2008 4:50 am
Posts: 45
Location: california
I found this article very interesting about how even Lasers from thousands of feet below can blur a pilots vision. This article I think was written about a year ago in 2007? if memory serves me correct.

SANTA ANA, Calif. -- Three people accused of pointing lasers at aircraft in Orange County were in trouble with the law Thursday.

In the latest incident, a 15-year-old boy from Las Vegas is accused of pointing a laser beam at a commercial airliner, a Newport Beach police helicopter and an Orange County Transportation Authority bus Christmas evening, officials said.

The boy was playing with one of his Christmas presents, said Newport Beach police Sgt. Evan Sailor.

He has been released to his parents and will return home but will be contacted by the Juvenile Court, Sailor said.

"He probably didn't realize the seriousness of his action and that what he was doing was against the law," Sailor said.

The boy was found by police when the helicopter crew helped trace the beam to a residence near Summit Street and Seashore Drive in Newport Beach, Sailor said.

Meanwhile, one of the men arrested last Sunday in connection with charges he pointed a laser beam at a sheriff's helicopter has been charged with a misdemeanor count of discharging a laser at an occupied aircraft, said Deputy District Attorney Kal Kaliban.

Hatch could face up to a year in jail if convicted, the prosecutor said.

The charge could be filed as a felony, but Kaliban said he did not believe Hatch was trying to bring down the chopper.

"It was malicious and a bad choice, but not done with the intent to harm the helicopter and bring it down in a crash," Kaliban said.

Jose Alberto Rich, 52, of Garden Grove, was also arrested Sunday on suspicion of pointing a laser beam at a sheriff's helicopter.

Garden Grove police were notified by the Federal Aviation Administration about a report that a laser was aimed at a commercial aircraft from the area, police said.

It was not immediately known if Rich has been charged, said Susan Schroeder of the Orange County District Attorney's Office.

Both men bailed out of jail and were ordered to appear in court about a month later, officials said.

Jim Amormino of the Orange County Sheriff's Department said the incidents involving Rich and Hatch were unrelated. He noted they took place before Christmas, so they likely did not involve experimenting with a new gift.

Both helicopter pilots involved that day reported temporary problems with vision, said Kaliban.

The pilot in the Hatch incident suffered a little more blurred vision than the other pilot, but both recovered, Kaliban said.

Still, issues involving the pilot's vision will be monitored, and if there is any lasting effect, Hatch could face a felony charge, Kaliban said.

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