Is Your Holiday Light Show a Danger to Our Safe Skies?


Tis the season for gift giving, family dinners, and ugly neckties and sweaters . . . and let’s not forget the outdoor light displays! High-tech light and laser displays are increasingly popular and accessible, and our senses (and sensibilities) are bombarded with dazzling displays of light coordinated with the Die Hard soundtrack (yes, it’s a Christmas movie). But did you know that these high-tech displays put airline pilots (with your family and packages on board) in danger?

 Your holiday light show might be lighting up more than just your neighborhood. Extremely focused laser beams can cause a “laser strike” that lights up the inside of an airplane cockpit. This can cause temporary blindness in the pilot, which puts the flight in immediate danger, and sometimes long-term effects on a pilot’s vision leave him or her unable to work. So far this year, the Federal Aviation Administration has received 5,486 reports of laser strikes against aircraft. We’re not trying to be the Grinch—we love holiday displays and encourage you to spread your good tidings and cheer. All we ask is that you keep your lights and lasers pointed at your house and not to the sky, and we’ll make sure your family and friends (and all those online orders) arrive safe and secure.

Categories: Industry, Safety
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