CULPRITS who shine laser pens at pilots, train and bus drivers could be thrown in jail a new government crackdown announced yesterday.
Transport Secretary Chris Grayling said: “This kind of dangerous behaviour risks lives and must be stopped.”
It is currently an offence to shine lasers at pilots which can be punished with a fines of up to £2,500. However police do not have the powers to tackle laser attacks against aircraft, trains, buses and other types of transport.
Under the new rules, police will only have to prove the offence of shining the laser instead of having to prove that an aircraft had been endangered.
There have been approximately 1,500 laser strikes each year since 2011, up from 200 which were reported in 2008.
Pilots’ union Balpa flight safety specialist Steve Landells said: “Any move to give the police and authorities more powers to tackle this real and growing threat to flight safety is a good thing, and we are pleased that the government has included action on lasers in this Bill.”