Helicopters targeted with lasers in Northamptonshire

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Police helicopters have been subjected to laser attacks while flying over Daventry it has emerged.

Sgt Sam Dobbs from Daventry police said: “Our helicopter crew reports occasional laser incidents above Daventry. Penalty is tough, and needs to be.”

Pointing lasers at helicopters and planes can lead to people being charged with endangering the aircraft, crew and passengers.

The clear fear would be the helicopter losing control and crashing, potentially over the town itself.

Low power lasers are designed such that if shone in someone’s eyes they will react by turning their head away – something clearly dangerous while piloting a aircraft.

However, research by Public Health England has shown many laser pointers are of a higher power which can lead to people being dazzled, left temporarily blind, and in some cases can cause permanent eye damage.

Pilots also report that even if the laser is not in their eyes, the light bouncing around a cockpit can be distracting and pose a danger.