When I was a kid, I had a small laser pointer. It chowed down on single cell batteries and did little more than annoy my pets. Now, modern laser pointers, such as the Wicked Lasers that exist for whatever reason, can burn through stuff and shoot a beam all the way into space. Sure, that sounds pretty cool but all of this can be bad news for helicopter pilots.
With the above GIF representing “exhibit A,” we present the case of how humans can be idiots. A seemingly drunken patio get together gets out of hand when one stupid dummy decides to blind a passing helicopter pilot in Birmingham, England. Unfortunately for our not-so-bright friend, that specific helicopter was owned by the US National Police Air Service who used thermal imaging cameras to immediately locate the laser-wielding perpetrator and his drunken comrades. The night ends in an arrest.
I wish I could say as a fellow human being that this was an isolated case, but unfortunately this has been going on for years even though such behaviour can levy huge fines and prison time (which this guy received both). Hopefully the lesson was finally learned at least for one person. [Reddit]