... Why It Would Be in Your Cockpit ...

  • E-Mail this Article
  • View Printable Article
  • Text size:

    • A
    • A
    • A

Kucharek stressed that the lasers being used in the VWS will not damage the eyes or anything else. He told AVweb the lasers (the good ones) are less powerful than the laser pointers (the bad ones) suspected of causing widely reported mischief over the past few weeks. But he also said the "visually conspicuous lights" are designed to get a pilot's attention. They are "... distinct from other light signals currently used by FAA Air Traffic Control, [and] are designed to provide a clear warning to pilots who enter the ADIZ without authorization and cannot be contacted on VHF voice radio by Air Traffic Control," he said. "Only aircraft that are unauthorized or unidentified and unresponsive would be visually warned." Presumably, the bright lights are supposed to prompt the hitherto unaware and unresponsive pilot to contact ATC and ultimately get out of the ADIZ, or simply make a hasty retreat. And if he or she doesn't? While the statement doesn't say, you might assume the next step would involve something with jet engines armed with items potentially more harmful than a laser. If NORAD decides to deploy the laser system (and the FAA agrees), there will be a "Special Advisory Notice from the FAA describing the lights and prescribing action," Kucharek said.