Lawmakers ban laser-aiming at planes, limit drones
BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — Lawmakers have agreed to prohibit both aiming a laser at an aircraft and using an unmanned aircraft over chemical plants.
The House gave final passage Tuesday to the measure by Rep. Terry Landry, D-New Iberia, with an 82-4 vote.
Intentionally shining a laser at a plane or in its flight path would carry a prison sentence of at least one year and up to five years for a first offense and a $2,000 fine. For second and subsequent offenses, the penalty would be two to 10 years in prison and a $4,000 fine.
Senators amended Landry's bill to create the crime of flying a drone over petroleum and alumina refineries, chemical and rubber plants and nuclear power plants. Violation would carry a prison sentence of up to six months for a first offense and up to one year in prison for later offenses, along with fines.
Drones could fly over restricted areas for film production with the property owner's consent.
The bill heads to Gov. Bobby Jindal.