The number of lasers pointed at aircraft in 2010 almost doubled from the previous year to more than 2,800, with the Honolulu Airport recording 47 laser events — the 8th highest in the country, the Federal Aviation Administration reported today.
Maui recorded seven, Hilo two and Lihue, Kalaeloa and Kona each recorded one, the FAA said.
The FAA said that 2,800 strikes are the highest number of laser events recorded since the FAA began keeping track in 2005.
Los Angeles International Airport recorded the highest number of laser events, with 102 reports, and the greater Los Angeles area tallied nearly twice that number, with 201 reports. Chicago O’Hare International Airport was a close second, with 98 reports, and Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport and Norman Y. Mineta San Jose International Airport tied for the third highest number of laser events for the year with 80 each.
"This is a serious safety issue," said U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood. "Lasers can distract and harm pilots who are working to get passengers safely to their destinations."