Planes and Lasers

Hello all,

I’m just here to share my experience with you all and hopefully you can learn something…

Today at around 1841Z, I encountered my first laser attack, we where at around 7600ft on Standard Pressure above Ulverston (South of the Lake District in the U.K), after descending through a thin layer of cloud, a green beam shot across the nose of the aircraft, then straight into the cockpit, illuminating everything, and severely bright, of course our initial reaction was to put something in front of our faces, so we did (bare in mind the Airplane is flying on A/P at this time), a few seconds later, we made the split decision to turn away from the Laser, then reported it to ATC, with time and approximate location of the Laser Attack, the attack lasted in excess of 10-15 seconds, luckily, nobody was injured in the attack, but did mess our plans up a little, as we initially planned to fly further East. 21 minutes later, whilst on an RNAV approach, and at 3300 feet on local QNH, we unfortunately where attacked again from the Leyland area (South of Preston in the U.K), this time the attack substantially shorter, lasting only 3-7 seconds, however this time the laser was coming from the RH side of the Aircraft (my side), and consequently, I looked somewhat at the laser, which initially didn’t cause any issues, but after landing, I had noticed my right eye seemed a bit fuzzy, whether this is just me seeing things, or a genuine injury, I’m not sure, however this fuzziness has since gone.

Thankfully, after reporting both attacks to ATC, they had later told us that they have found the location of the Ulverston attack, a different station (Warton Radar) had somehow found the area of where the attack was from.

So what did I learn? This event really enforces how important it is to Aviate, Navigate then Communicate. Aviate, this was quite simple, the Aircraft was already on A/P (LNAV). Navigate, turn away from the laser if possible. And then Communicate, we cant let these attacks go unreported.

Has anyone else ever been involved in a Laser Attack?

33 Likes

Luckily I’ve not been in a laser attack. Like how do they keep up with you? I don’t understand a point of an ‘attack’, I mean all it’s going to be within any kind of reason is a bunch of 13 year olds who just got a toy laser. Like what do they get out of it? Twice sounds a bit scary… Like in the Lake District, I’m surprised it would happen there, we are quite safe in threatening to aircraft and stuff here.

13 Likes

It’s frankly, unacceptable and highly dangerous, people should really be educated on this.

10 Likes

I fly and one time on ATC I heard someone report it. Kinda gives me chills

1 Like

Out of question was it a legitimate small laser beam, or some kind of illuminating monstrosity like ET’s standing above your aircraft? It would be interesting so if I ever get this happen to me.

Luckily where I fly it’s almost just fields and marshland.

2 Likes

Lol that’s a good point

1 Like

Heck yeah, best toy in my life

1 Like

I was being humourous, but not full on joking! 😂

As a pilot in training I’m interested in knowing the experiences with this situation so I can expect what would possibly happen, and know how to protect my eyes and control of the aircraft if it ever happens to me.

1 Like

I guess someone hasn’t ever played with a laser before.
And if you want this to be banned, ask the salesmen…

The whole cockpit was illuminated with Neon-Green, the small glimpse of the beam over Ulverston I managed to get, it seemed quite substantial, but hard to tell, it mainly involved hiding from the beam to be honest.

1 Like

I’m pretty sure it’s a criminal offence in the U.K.

1 Like

Ok, go to the cops.


Ok ok, in all seriousness… it’s probably just some kids pointing that thing to the sky. I don’t think they did it on purpose.
It’s indeed very dangerous though, especially for GA as they fly lower. Hope you are okay :)


AAAAAAAANNNNND, happy cake day to you🥳
3 years on IFC… wow! Congrats 🎉

1 Like

That is some crazy stuff! Btw Happy Birthday!

1 Like

Thank you, yes it may be some kids, but it is extremely dangerous, especially if the PIC is unable to fly the aircraft for whatever reason.

And yeah, 3 Years in the good old IFC!

1 Like

Thats actually a good point, I don’t know what speed you were going, but it can be difficult to keep a laser on a moving target, especially an aircraft moving at high speeds.

Im sorry to hear this happen to you, glad you made it out safe

We where doing around 160kts GS.

1 Like

WOW! and to keep a laser on you???

What were you flying in?

Glad your safe , my main threats and concerns as always are birds, drones, and lasers . Other than the natural birds it’s the two legged ones I’m always keeping an eye for . Unsafe for us pilots and strictly unsafe for those below as well. Thanks for sharing hope they get them good and stick the laws to em .

2 Likes

Nope, nope, nope…

Following and aircraft for 15 seconds is no “accident” frankly the whole dismissive nature of your post is very concerning to me. I don’t want to sound aggressive, but saying things like “I don’t think it was on purpose” is a little too cavalier in my opinion. These sorts of attacks can cause blindness temporary or perhaps permanent. What is gonna happen in a single pilot plane if the pilot goes blind? Bad things, very bad things. Even in a commercial airliner, there not designed for single pilot, so one pilot goes blind that’s really bad, image if they hit both? That’s unimaginable, but certainly not out of the realm of possibility. These laser attacks are very serious, and anyone who participated in one should be punished, and firmly. Unfortunately it’s hard if not impossible to catch the perpetrators, but there’s lot of people working on solutions to that.

2 Likes

Oh it definitely is. It’s been on the news a few times about people getting caught and arrested for it.

3 Likes