Frikin laser beams

Discussion in 'Flight Following' started by snglecoil, Sep 8, 2020.

  1. snglecoil

    snglecoil Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I decided to get in a night currency flight in on Sunday. On the way back in to the home airport, the cabin and bottom of the wings flashed and lit up like I had either just flown into a thunderstorm or was just about to have a close encounter with another plane. Scared the crap out me, until I realized it was...
    [​IMG]

    I had a GoPro running and it didn't show much, just a couple of really quick green pinpoint dots hitting the windshield.

    Anybody else have the joy of being lasered? I've heard someone suggest to turn off all the lights, which, of course, I would obviously never recommend for safety and consideration of the regs. But then again, maybe this could fall under 91.3(b)?
     
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  2. kep5niner

    kep5niner Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Lasing is definitely a thing, not to be trifled with. Coming from the helicopter world - low and slow - that was some of Charlie's favorite past times. I've had crew members afflicted, particularly with NVGs - they give away right where to point the laser. Damage to the eyes can be temporary, to permanent. A quick Google search will demonstrate lasing events in Commercial and GA aviation as well. There are countermeasures for lasers...but not something you'd see in GA. Glad it sounds like you're OK.
     
  3. Boone

    Boone Pre-Flight

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    Note the time and position but don’t look at it, the likelihood of damage is minimal if you don’t stare at it.
     
  4. IK04

    IK04 Pattern Altitude

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    When operating in a special part of an unnamed Asian country, we had to use laser protective visors. Those things cost more than the helmets we put them on...
     
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  5. Bill Jennings

    Bill Jennings Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    Or, if the GoPro GPS was active, the feds might like the footage to try and locate the bastage.
     
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  6. eman1200

    eman1200 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    This is why we need 30mm cannons attached to our wings. BBBRRTTTTTTTT
     
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  7. Timbeck2

    Timbeck2 Final Approach PoA Supporter

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    If you get lazed while talking to ATC, let them know as soon as possible so they can mark the location and color of laser on their scope and warn other pilots. This happens a lot in Tucson. Most of the time we have one of the police helicopters in the air at the time and can direct them to it. Three busts so far and counting.
     
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  8. snglecoil

    snglecoil Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Yeah, since I was going between airports only 20 miles apart I opted not to talk to ATC. I thought about contacting approach to let them know and probably should have.
     
  9. Huckster79

    Huckster79 Cleared for Takeoff PoA Supporter

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    So is it pucks screwing with us? I’ve heard of it but not read up much on it..
     
  10. Geosync

    Geosync Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Yep. I told ATC but not much they could do other than report it up the chain. It didn't occur to me at the time to cut my lights off and change course a bit. I was kinda in disbelief about how disturbing the green beam was. Like "am I actually getting hit by a laser right now?" Of course in hindsight I should have told ATC that's what I was going to do. I was VFR but there was no one around.
     
  11. Kritchlow

    Kritchlow Final Approach

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    I have been lased in the eye. Not a nice experience, but no long term damage. A bit of short term issues.
    Wasn’t long ago that some folks here were laughing at it and saying it’s a non issue.
     
  12. WillFly4Food

    WillFly4Food Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Similar. It’s not fun, especially since it’s mostly a night flight thing, so your pupils are dilated. Happened to me once and the sensation later was as if I’d watched arc welding from a distance without eye protection.

    How can people think that’s cool?
     
  13. Palmpilot

    Palmpilot Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    People aren't always smart, and don't always consider how their actions might affect others.
     
  14. woodchucker

    woodchucker Cleared for Takeoff

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    It’s definitely an issue. Never been targeted while flying but I teach high school and got a green laser in my eyes from way down the hallway. Tried to catch the bastard but they were too far away. The pain is real. Thankfully no long term damage.
     
  15. chemgeek

    chemgeek Pattern Altitude

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    So what is the thrill in endangering a pilot with a high power laser? And why does anyone outside a research lab or manufacturing facility need a 5 watt handheld laser? I'm not understanding the rationale for consumer use.
     
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  16. Cap'n Jack

    Cap'n Jack Final Approach PoA Supporter

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    Holography. More power = less exposure time and less chance for something to move during the exposure. Hand-held makes it stupid easy to set up the alignment on a bench.
    Bird control: https://www.birdcontrolgroup.com/aerolaser-handheld/
     
  17. snglecoil

    snglecoil Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Apparently, a lot of people are just a-holes....myself included according to my wife :dunno:
     
  18. TCABM

    TCABM Pattern Altitude

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    Doesn’t even take 1/4 watt to create a hazard 2 miles away. More watts doesn’t correlate to greater hazard, either.
    [​IMG]
     
  19. flyingron

    flyingron Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    I don't think they think about the danger. Here you've got one of those spiffy green lasers. You point it at the house across the street, cool. I can point it at that building way down the street, cool. I can point it at a cloud, cool. Hey, I can point it at that airplane. Ooops.

    People are stupid.
     
  20. rbridges

    rbridges En-Route

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    Useful load kills it for my mooney.
     
  21. danhagan

    danhagan Pattern Altitude

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    Same situation over east El Paso several years ago. They got me and a couple of SWA flights. I got asked to orbit the area and NOT look down, was getting lit pretty good. LEO chopper came in fast without lights and were all over them like your situation ... it was a guy in his backyard.
     
  22. Tarheelpilot

    Tarheelpilot En-Route

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    Don’t worry about the regs unless you value complying with a regulation more than being able to see. Laser exposure is potentially very damaging to your eyes.
     
  23. donjohnston

    donjohnston Line Up and Wait

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    Wait a minute... Viet Cong had lasers???
     
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  24. Palmpilot

    Palmpilot Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    Avoiding an imminent threat of being blinded falls under the definition of "an in-flight emergency requiring immediate action," IMO.
     
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  25. Warlock

    Warlock Cleared for Takeoff PoA Supporter

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    My exact thought...lol... last time I heard the term used was out of my mouth doing “goodnight Charlie“ sweeps for night missions returning I required my pilots to complete in Bosnia. For those that don’t know a nighttime sweep of the perimeter of the base camp by a low level helicopter and preferably a pink team was a “Goodnight Charlie”
     
  26. Capt. Geoffrey Thorpe

    Capt. Geoffrey Thorpe Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    Why stop at 5? How about 200?


     
  27. Boone

    Boone Pre-Flight

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    I’m pretty sure that aiming Class 3B and Class 4 lasers above the horizon requires some type of approval. It does for gov’t agencies at least.
     
  28. smv

    smv Cleared for Takeoff

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    ...and let us not forget that "even the smallest plane is traveling 150 miles per hour" :rolleyes:
     
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  29. Palmpilot

    Palmpilot Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    CLEARLY, I've been doing it wrong all these years!
     
  30. Lachlan

    Lachlan En-Route

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    I believe that's actually 100% correct. My 150 travels miles per hour. Not very many, but still, after an hour I'm definitely a few miles away.
     
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  31. smv

    smv Cleared for Takeoff

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    ...but is your 150 the smallest plane?
     
  32. Dana

    Dana Pattern Altitude

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    But they're correct: The smallest plane, the Starr Bumblebee, has a 150 mph cruise speed.

    [​IMG]
     
  33. Piperonca

    Piperonca Pre-takeoff checklist PoA Supporter

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    Last edited: Sep 13, 2020
  34. Bender Aviation

    Bender Aviation Pre-Flight

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    Just need to mount a gun on your plane then you can take care of that rascal on the ground. You can do that if your plane is experimental right?
     
  35. jsstevens

    jsstevens Final Approach PoA Supporter

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    I don’t think the FAA has a problem with mounting it on an experimental. Dropping things that could endanger those on the ground might apply. Assuming you’re a good enough straffer.
     
  36. Piperonca

    Piperonca Pre-takeoff checklist PoA Supporter

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    Foreflight feature recommendation: laser target designator. Fly directly over where you got lased, press the LTD button and it automatically sends the coordinates to FAA and regional law enforcement agency.
     
  37. Lachlan

    Lachlan En-Route

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    From Textron? Yup.
     
  38. jim.nelson

    jim.nelson Pre-Flight

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    Aren't there some corner reflectors that can bounce the beam right back to the source from any angle?