- Feb 16, 2016
Good points.Technically, it probably isn't a stretch to consider showing someone your laser pointer beaming into the sky is a light show, they don't specify how many individuals are watching to be considered one, or whether free or not.
When I don't know the age of the person askingGood points.
I would guess any handheld laser > 5mW is covered given current definitions--FDA has closed up the technical loopholes pretty much as follows:
"Laser pointers are hand-held lasers that are promoted for pointing out objects or locations. Such laser products can meet one of two definitions for laser products. The first is for “surveying, leveling, and alignment laser products” as defined by Title 21 of the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Section 1040.10(b)(39):
“Surveying, leveling, or alignment laser product means a laser product manufactured, designed, intended or promoted for one or more of the following uses:
(i) Determining and delineating the form, extent, or position of a point, body, or area by taking angular measurement.
(ii) Positioning or adjusting parts in proper relation to one another.
(iii) Defining a plane, level, elevation, or straight line.”
Hand-held lasers promoted for entertainment purposes or amusement also meet the second definition, that of “demonstration laser products” as defined by 21 CFR 1040.10(b)(13):
“Demonstration laser product means a laser product manufactured, designed, intended, or promoted for purposes of demonstration, entertainment, advertising display, or artistic composition.”
Laser products promoted for pointing and demonstration purposes are limited to hazard Class IIIa by FDA regulation.
21 CFR 1040.11(b) and 1040.11(c), limit surveying, leveling, and alignment, and demonstration laser products to Class IIIa. This means that pointers are limited to 5 milliwatts output power in the visible wavelength range from 400 to 710 nanometers."
I could be wrong but my take on current regulations is if the laser is above 5mW and you want to use it outdoors---technically you need a variance from FDA to be in compliance with FDA laws, rules, and regulations and to get a variance for outdoor use requires a letter of non-objection from FAA.
Additionally --On July 15 2016, President Obama signed the FAA Extension, Safety, and Security Act of 2016 in which the Civil Fine was raised to $25,000 from $11,000 for each instance pointing at aircraft or in flight path