Video: Paramedic, pilot injured after laser pointed at Canadian air ambulance

The pilot and paramedic were evaluated for eye injuries and the flight crew provided the video to Toronto Police


By Laura French

CANADA — An air ambulance in Canada was struck by a laser during a flight this month, resulting in eye injuries to a paramedic and the pilot.

Canadian air ambulance company Ornge said in a news release Thursday the crew was returning to base after a call to a children’s hospital when someone pointed a green laser at the aircraft.  

The aircraft was able to return to the base without further incident, according to Ornge, but the pilot and paramedic were evaluated for eye injuries at a hospital in Toronto.

Video of the incident was captured by the flight crew, and a report was made to Toronto Police. The company also provided Canada’s transportation department with a Directed Bright Light Illumination Report.

The company noted that directing lasers at aircrafts can not only cause eye injuries and potential blindness, but also distract pilots and paramedics and cause further injury to patients.

The penalties for pointing lasers at aircrafts under Canada’s Aeronautics Act include up to five years in prison and a fine of up to $100,000 CAD (the equivalent of about $75,000 USD).

Ornge reported three laser strikes to its aircrafts in 2019 and five laser strikes in 2020 so far.

 

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