Laser protection bill passes Michigan House

Delta Airlines
FILE - In this Oct. 9, 2012 file photo, Delta Air Lines 747-400 airplane sits parked at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport in Seattle. Delta Airlines on Monday, Aug. 3, 2015 said that it would no longer accept lion, leopard, elephant, rhinoceros and buffalo hunting trophies. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren, File)

Michigan would make it a crime to intentionally shine a laser at an aircraft under legislation going to Gov. Rick Snyder for his expected signature.

Pointing a laser at an aircraft – which can temporarily blind the pilot – is currently a federal crime punishable by five years in prison and a $250,000 fine. But the Michigan State Police says a state law would deter strikes and help authorities catch people who are increasingly “lasing” aircraft, often near airports.

The main bill passed the House 106-2 Tuesday. It would make shining a laser at an aircraft or moving train a felony punishable by five years in prison and a $10,000 fine.

Exceptions would be made for research conducted by the military or aviation industry.

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