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Laser warning

Mere Naleba
Saturday, November 10, 2012

PEOPLE caught using laser lights to distract pilots while landing the aircraft or up-lifting from the runway will be arrested and face the full brunt of the law.

The warning by Airports Fiji Limited chief executive officer Tony Gollin yesterday comes in the wake of some reports that people are using laser lights to distract pilots.

Mr Gollin said AFL was now engaging the services of police in ensuring that those found guilty of putting the lives of many passengers at risk be prosecuted.

He said AFL had over the months received complaints from pilots based at Nausori and Nadi International airports about laser lights being aimed at them while trying to land or up-lift from the tarmac.

"It's a serious issue and we will not be lenient towards the individual or the group of people that are found to be doing this," Mr Gollin said.

"We are working with our security team on the ground to help identify the source of these laser lights and we will not hesitate to lodge formal complaints with the police when we find those involved in these practices," .

Police spokeswoman Ana Naisoro said they understood that five complaints were received by AFL management. Four of the complaints were made by pilots from Nausori while one was from a pilot in Nadi.

Ms Naisoro said the practice was a serious breach of the Air Navigation Regulations and was not condoned by police as it clearly put lives in danger.

The latest report established that the laser light source was coming from Muana Village in Toga, Rewa, police said.

"People must be aware that this is a serious safety matter and if this continues, then there is a risk that an accident may occur as highlighted by officials from AFL," said Ms Naisoro.

"This is a dangerous practice as it may lead to the blinding of the air crew and may result in a disastrous accident."


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