The FAA is asking laser manufacturers and distributors to add a label warning of the safety risks and federal laws related to laser use to their product packaging. The agency suggested that the label read: “Pointing a laser at an aircraft threatens pilots, and it is a federal crime. U.S. law enforcement agencies and the Federal Aviation Administration may seek criminal and civil prosecution against violators. Don’t shine this laser at aircraft.”
“Lasers may seem like just a toy, office tool, or game for most, but they can incapacitate pilots putting thousands of passengers at risk every year,” said Acting FAA Administrator Billy Nolen. “People need to be aware pointing a laser at an airplane is a federal crime.”
FAA fines for pointing a laser at an aircraft can run up to $11,000 for each violation and up to $30,800 for multiple incidents. The agency received 9,457 laser strike reports from pilots in 2022 and issued $120,000 in laser strike fines in 2021, a year that saw a record 9,723 laser strikes reported. 278 pilots have reported laser-related injuries to the FAA since 2010.