Tuesday, April 19, 2011

FDA Warning on Laser Pointers

The FDA has put out an alert about the dangers of hand held laser pointers stronger than 5 milliwatts. Read the full warning here.

Here are some key points from the FDA's warning on laser pointers:

1. More than1500 incidents of light beams striking their aircrafts or illuminating their cockpits were reported by pilots in 2009 alone.  The majority of these incidents were from laser lights. Worse yet these numbers are on a sharp rise as 2321 incidents were reported in the first 10 months of 2010. Using a laser to illuminate aircraft is a federal crime. It is a crime because it puts airplane passengers at serious risk.

2. Hand-held laser pointers over 5 mW and those that are not properly labeled are illegal in the U.S.  Despite this, many manufacturers continue to sell hand held laser pointers many times the legal power limit to anyone willing to buy them.

3. Prompt reporting of injuries can help the FDA identify and lessen the risks associated with hand held laser pointers. If you have been injured by a laser pointer, or if you witness an injury involving a laser pointer, you are encouraged to submit a report to your local FDA District Office.

4. The vast majority of laser point injuries go unreported. Share this post :
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