APSA / FDA Laser Reporting

APSA has created an internet-based laser incident reporting tool. A laser incident is misuse of a laser that results in impairment of your ability to perform your job as a law enforcement or emergency response professional.

As you are probably aware, misuse of lasers can result in visual impairment which affects flight safety. Laser misuse not only affects the safe operation of aircraft, it affects the safety of ground personnel too; any law enforcement or emergency response personnel can be effected.

There are a number of federal and state agencies that encourage the reporting of laser misuse. These include the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). The FAA has compiled a large database of incidents of laser illumination of aircraft. The FBI has taken a lead role in prosecuting laser misuse that affects the safety of aircraft personnel.

In collaboration with the FDA, APSA has decided to collect its own laser misuse data with the goal of collecting data on more incidents with detailed incident information. This information, with photographs (if available and including a picture of the label if there is one), will be collected by APSA members and others from the law enforcement and emergency response community. The information will be shared with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) because the FDA is responsible for regulating the manufacturers of laser products. The FDA will use the incident data to aid in its enforcement of existing laser safety standards and to determine how often incidents occur, where they occur, and if known, which products are involved in these incidents.

We hope that by stronger data collection, we will have stronger enforcement of laser safety standards, or changes in existing standards, which will eventually result in fewer incidents. 

How? The FDA, in many cases and if provided the right information, has the ability to determine who is manufacturing laser products and whether or not the products are compliant with laser safety standards. The FDA can work with U.S. Customs and Border Protection to restrict and/or reject shipments of illegal laser products into the U.S.

We strongly encourage you to provide this information to your ground units so that they can work with you to gather the necessary information when lasers are confiscated after their illicit use. It will require you to make sure that your colleagues on the ground gather the right information and take the necessary pictures of the devices and get that information to you so you can submit it through the APSA website (or you can download a PDF version and send it via email).

We need your help to help you, so please take the time to work with us on this endeavor. Doing so could save lives.

Laser Incident Report Form

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