Helicopter suffers laser attack near Trowbridge

On the evening of Sunday 10 December 2023 our Bell 429 helicopter was subjected to a laser attack near to our airbase in Semington.

Monday, 11 December 2023

A paramedic wearing an orange flight suit walking towards a yellow and green helicopter

The incident, which occurred at 9.10pm, happened as the crew were returning to the airbase after the conclusion of a training mission.

A very bright green laser was shone at our helicopter from the Trowbridge direction.

Thankfully the pilot and the critical care paramedics on board were unharmed and landed safely. Following checks they were able to continue their night shift.

Chief pilot Matt Wilcock said: “This incident happened while we were undertaking a training flight, but had we been responding to a medical emergency then we would not have been able to land and give critical care.

“Shining a laser at an aircraft is dangerous and irresponsible. It can seriously damage the eyes of those on board, which in turn could place the entire aircraft at risk with potentially catastrophic effects.”

It is the second laser attack to impact on our aircraft this year, the other very similar incident occurred on 22 August as the crew returned to base, with the light being shone from the Hilperton area at 9.33pm.

Shining a laser at an aircraft is a criminal offence. It carries an unlimited fine and up to five years in prison.

Wiltshire Police is investigating the incident. If you have any information please contact them by calling 101 with the crime reference 54230131125.

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Two male paramedics, wearing orange flight suits, standing in front of a yellow and green helicopter, holding a large novelty cheque