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Coast Guard helicopter crew struck by laser

A Coast Guard helicopter crew was targeted by an individual with a laser pointer while flying in the vicinity of Waimanalo Bay on the Hawaiian island of Oahu.

The MH-65 Dolphin helicopter crew was conducting a search on Nov. 24 in response to an uncorrelated distress call when the incident occurred. Four crewmembers observed the laser sweeping the aircraft and one of the pilots was directly struck.

The Coast Guard is working with the Federal Aviation Administration and the Honolulu Police Department to investigate the incident.

“We were searching off Waimanalo following a received mayday call when we were hit by a green laser,” said Lt. Cmdr. Roger Barr, an MH-65 Dolphin helicopter pilot at Air Station Barbers Point. “We protected our eyes quickly enough to avoid being blinded, reported the incident, and were able to continue the mission.”

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