U.S. Coast Guard helicopter grounded after laser incident in Port Angeles

PORT ANGELES, Wash. (AP) — Coast Guard officials say a helicopter training mission was cut short after someone shined a laser at the aircraft in Port Angeles.

Officials said in a news release the MH-65 Dolphin returned to Air Station Port Angeles after the incident at about 6:30 p.m. Monday.

No injuries have been reported but all crew members must be cleared by medical personnel before they can return to training. Officials say lasers can cause permanent eye damage and at night can cause temporary loss of night vision, among other injuries.

Lt. Cmdr. Greg Lynch says a laser can be just as dangerous as shooting a gun in bringing down an aircraft.

The Coast Guard and local law enforcement are investigating.

Anyone with information is asked to call the Coast Guard at 360-417-5823.