British Columbia

Increased laser pointer incidents aimed at aircraft

Distraction, glare and temporary blindness are all things that can affect pilots if a laser is pointed at them while they are flying.

Many of the 500-plus Canadian incidents reported last year were in B.C.

Distraction, glare and temporary blindness are all things that can affect pilots if a laser is pointed at them while they are flying. (Zach Goudie/CBC)

Distraction, glare and temporary blindness are just some of the consequences that can affect pilots if a laser is pointed at them while they are flying. 

That's why Transport Canada is concerned about a significant spike in the number of times that happens these days. 

Last year in B.C., there were 80 reported incidents of lasers being aimed at planes.

That is a 300 per cent increase from five years ago when the reported  number was 26. 

As of the second week of 2015, there have already been a pair of incidents at Vancouver International Airport. 

One involved an Air Canada Jazz plane and the other a Helijet aircraft. 

Anyone found guilty of pointing a laser at plane in the air could face $100,000 fine or up to five years in jail. 

With files from Richard Zussman

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