Police investigate multiple incidents of lasers being focused on U.S. military aircraft near Yokota base


Police in Tokyo are investigating multiple reports of lasers being aimed the cockpits of aircraft as they approach the U.S. military’s air base at Yokota.

In the latest incident, on Feb 11, the pilots of two C-130 military transport aircraft reported seeing laser beams on the cockpit window as they were flying over the town of Mizuho, situated in the western part of Tokyo, at around 6:30 p.m. The pilots said the beam lasted for several seconds. Nobody was injured and the planes landed at Yokota without any damage, Fuji TV reported.

Law enforcement officials are currently investigating the cases as forcible obstruction of business.

When deliberately aimed at an aircraft, a laser beam can temporarily distract the pilot, which in turn, could potentially lead to a plane crash. Since July 2018, there have been 10 confirmed incidents of lasers being pointed at military transport aircraft arriving at the Yokota base.

Furthermore, in 2015, a 56-year-old man was fined 500,000 yen and arrested for forcible obstruction of business after pointing a laser beam at a military helicopter flying near the U.S. Marine Corps Air Station at Futenma in Okinawa.

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I hope they catch them and toss them in jail. Sorry - holding. For several months. Without a trial. Pointing lasers at cockpits is just plain dangerous.

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30 seconds of temporary blindness can easily cause a crash, especially in rotor aircraft.

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