Rick Snyder

States alarmed by laser strikes on aircraft are passing laws

Michigan State Police pilot Jerry King was flying his state plane back to the Lansing airport after a mission when he saw a green pulsing light in the night sky.

Suddenly, he was blinded by a bright flash, much like staring into a camera flashbulb as it goes off, and he was unable to see for several seconds.

"It'll seem like 10," King said. "If you lose control of the aircraft, that's it. It's not like a co-pilot's going to take over."

The cockpit of the single-engine plane was hit by a laser beam directed by someone on the ground. Such incidents once happened occasionally to pilots, as laser devices became commonly available to amateur...