Canada Launches Aggressive Laser Awareness Campaign

This week, Canada’s transportation regulatory agency, Transport Canada, launched a social media campaign to raise awareness of the dangers associated with shining a laser at an aircraft. Transport Minister Marc Garneau introduced the “Not a Bright Idea” campaign on Tuesday at a press conference in Toronto.

According to Transport Canada, in 2015, nearly 600 laser strike incidents were reported to the agency, an increase from the 502 incidents reported in 2014. In 2016, that number stands at 148 incidents, from January to April.

In an interview with CTV News, Minister Garneau expressed his concern with lasers being aimed at aircraft, “This is not only reckless, it’s not only a stupid act—it’s also criminal.”

ALPA has partnered with industry in the United States and Canada to help educate the public and garner support to mitigate the threat posed by handheld lasers to civil aviation. In addition to highlighting the health and flight safety risks, “Not a Bright Idea” also emphasizes the consequences associated with pointing a laser at an airplane. Just as in the United States, shining a laser at an aircraft is a criminal act, and offenders in Canada can face $100,000 in fines, up to five years in prison, or both.

Shining a laser at an aircraft is dangerous for both pilots and passengers. ALPA is proud to partner with Transport Canada, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Federal Aviation Administration, law enforcement, and industry on laser strike awareness and penalties against this type of crime.

Join the conversation on social media with #NotABrightIdea.

Categories: Safety, Advocacy
Tags: Canada, Lasers;