Last updated: 09:14 AM ET, Thu October 29 2015

Police Confirm Laser Light Incident During Flight to San Diego

Impacting Travel | Donald Wood | October 29, 2015

Police Confirm Laser Light Incident During Flight to San Diego

Photo courtesy of Thinkstock

On Tuesday night, an American Airlines pilot had a laser light shined at him as the plane he was flying was preparing for a landing in San Diego.

According to Alastair Jamieson of, American Airlines Flight 563 departed from Phoenix, Arizona, with 168 passengers and six crew members onboard Tuesday. When the plane was about five miles east of the San Diego International Airport, the captain reported that a green beam of light lit up the cockpit.

The aircraft—an Airbus A32— managed to land safely at San Diego Airport at 9:10 p.m. local time. Initial reports suggested the pilot was taken to the hospital, but the airline denied those claims.

American Airlines spokesman Kent Powell told, “Upon approach into San Diego … the captain of American Airlines Flight 563 encountered a laser light in the cockpit. The crew declined medical attention and there are no reports of injuries from passengers.”

The San Diego Police Department also confirmed the laser-light incident.

Shining laser lights into the cockpit of planes has been a problem in recent years. TravelPulse’s Rich Thomaselli reported in July that the Federal Aviation Administration investigated 11 different commercial flights that were targeted by laser pointers.


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