• Sweden's news in English

Swedish police officers injured in laser attack

TT/The Local · 13 Dec 2009, 16:54

Published: 13 Dec 2009 16:54 GMT+01:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

The police were responding to complaints about a loud party in an apartment when the attack took place.

“Two officers were taken to hospital in an ambulance,” Skåne police spokesperson Lennart Honemark told the TT news agency.

“They’ve been treated and allowed to return home, but it will be awhile before we will know if their eyes were permanently damaged.

Another police car was show by the laser, but no officers were injured.

According to the Svenska Dagbladet (SvD), there have been more than 80 reported laser attacks against police in Sweden in the last year.

Officers have sustained injuries to their eyes, but so far none of the injuries has resulted in permanent damage.

In addition to the attacks on police officers, a number of other civilians have also been injured after being shot with laser pointers.

The offending laser pointers are thought to be of a variety used for lectures and are often no larger than a pen or a pocket flashlight.

Story continues below…

Since February 1st of this year, Sweden has required people wishing to use laser pointers stronger than 5 milliwatts in public places to obtain a permit from the Swedish Radiation Safety Authority (Strålsäkerhetsmyndigheten).

However, it’s still possible to obtain the products, which are sold freely over the internet.

TT/The Local (news@thelocal.se)

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Your comments about this article

19:28 December 13, 2009 by Nemesis
This is twisted.

Lasers don't cause temporary black spots. They burn the retina and cause permanent blindness.

I hope the people who did this get what they deserve.
20:20 December 13, 2009 by Jimmy
now they have a real excuse to turning a blind eye to actual crime
23:19 December 13, 2009 by double concerto
The culprits will be severely punished, all of two weeks harsh community service no doubt.
02:12 December 14, 2009 by lingonberrie
The solution is to ban any laser in Sweden with the capability of creating any injury to the eyes of people, animals or birds. No one needs a laser pointer with any more power, and no one needs that or any other laser when they are not involved in presenting a lecture.

Trying to find those responsible is difficult in the best of circumstances,

and under the Swedish system, that is near impossible. However, more police power is not the answer.

I also would like to know who was involved in the use of the lasers in that party and in the injuries to " . . .a number of other civilians."

Names and photos would help.
04:45 December 14, 2009 by badgerknox
It would probably be a good idea for police to use laser eye protection. It's fairly inexpensive, especially for laser pointer kind of devices and may more than pay for itself in saved medical expenses. If military personnel can get it, why shouldn't the police?
09:48 December 14, 2009 by eZee.se
I bought a green laser a while back, very cool... but decided to stop using it after a while because its so damn dangerous.

The one i bought was 5mw, but its easy to "tune" it higher by just following some simple internet tutorials... scary considering what "just" 5mw can do to the human eye.
13:36 December 14, 2009 by xenyasai
@lingonberrie: That worked out fine in Norway, right? Banning certain types of fireworks; which is not banned in Sweden. Oh look, Norwegians go across the border to Sweden to buy those types of firework.

Banning can work, if it is difficult to elsewhere, but when you might just have to cross a border a ban is just useless. On paper the government have done a good job and banned something "dangerous", but how well did that ban work out?

The best thing is to educate people about it, but later ban if no one is willing to be educated of course.

If we were to ban anything that might be potentially dangerous, it would be easier to just make a short list of things that would not be banned.

In some countries it is illegal to access wireless routers to access the internet, even if the router is deliberately been made open to the public. Is that a society you want to live in?

Punish those who do wrong. Punishing everyone never works out in the end.
14:25 December 14, 2009 by Flappytango

I too hope they get what they deserve...

but lasers can cause temporary vision issues (no permanent retinal damage). I am talking from my own experience in a research environment. I knew two others that were not as lucky. They received permanent partial vision loss (ie permanent black spots).
09:13 December 15, 2009 by Britswedeguy
Don't fall into the English trap of trying to ban everything - it's not worked in England and just left a twisted, paranoid society.

Sweden has far too many kilometers of border for that to have any chance of enforcement anyway.

Why should the actions of one person affect the freedoms of hundreds of others?
Today's headlines
Malmö's 19th Swedish title sets Champions hopes alight
Malmö fans celebrating after the match. Photo: Björn Lindgren/TT

Malmö FF have their eyes set on the Champions League after winning the Swedish league for the 19th year.

What's on in Sweden
Five great autumn events in Sweden this week
Jazz in northern Sweden. Photo: Umeå Jazz Festival

Food, music, movies and more food. What better way of helping yourself forget that the days are getting shorter and colder?

Here's how slow Sweden's high-speed trains are getting
A Swedish SJX2000 high speed train. Photo: Tomas Oneborg/SvD/TT

The high-speed rail journey between the three biggest Swedish cities is about to get longer.

The Local List
12 Swedish words with just awesome literal translations
A filthy-minded lobster, i.e. a snuskhummer. Photo: Gorm Kallestad/NTB scanpix/TT

One of our favourite things about the Swedish language is its wonderful compound words, which range from being utterly bizarre to making perfect sense.

US election
Donald Trump won't get new Ericsson head's vote
Trump pictured at a campaign rally in Florida. Photo: Evan Vucci/AP

The new Swedish-American boss of telecoms giant Ericsson has revealed he will not vote for the Republican nominee in the forthcoming US presidential election.

Swedes named fourth most gender equal in the world
A file photo of men and women pushing prams in Stockholm. Photo: Claudio Bresciani/TT

Sweden has closed 81 percent of its overall gender gap according to the World Economic Forum.

Sweden: Russian warships in the Baltic 'worrying'
Swedish Defence Minister Peter Hultqvist. Photo: Vilhelm Stokstad/TT

Two Russian warships equipped with long-range missiles have entered the Baltic Sea after passing Denmark.

Why businesses are worried about Sweden's drone ban
A drone filming in Stockholm. Photo: Pontus Lundahl/TT

The Local investigates what Sweden's new drone ban could mean for businesses in the country.

This is the new top boss of Swedish Ericsson
Börje Ekholm. Photo: Magnus Hjalmarson Neideman/SvD/TT

Telecoms giant Ericsson has appointed a new CEO after a turbulent year for the company.

These are Sweden's best universities: ranking
A new university ranking has been released. Photo: Cecilia Larsson Lantz/Imagebank.sweden.se

At least according to this global ranking, which picks 12 Swedish universities among the top-1000.

Sponsored Article
Stockholm: creating solutions to global challenges
Sweden cuts 2016 refugee forecast
Sponsored Article
Last chance to vote absentee in the US elections
Is Game of Thrones coming to Sweden?
Property of the week: Kungsholmen, Stockholm
Blog updates

6 October

10 useful hjälpverb (The Swedish Teacher) »

"Hej! I think the so-called “hjalpverb” (auxiliary verbs in English) are a good way to get…" READ »


8 July

Editor’s blog, July 8th (The Local Sweden) »

"Hej readers, It has, as always, been a bizarre, serious and hilarious week in Sweden. You…" READ »

Sponsored Article
This is Malmö: Football capital of Sweden
Will Swedes soon be looking for fairtrade porn?
Sponsored Article
Where is the Swedish music industry heading?
The Local Voices
'I simply don’t believe in nationality'
Why we're convinced Game of Thrones is based on Sweden
People-watching: October 21st-23rd
Sponsored Article
Why you should 'grab a chair' on Stockholm's tech scene
Fury at plans that 'threaten the IB's survival' in Sweden
Sponsored Article
Swedish for programmers: 'It changed my life'
Analysis & Opinion
Are we just going to let half the country die?
Angry elk chases Swede up a lamp post
Sponsored Article
Top 7 tips to help you learn Swedish
The Local Voices
'Alienation in Sweden feels better: I find myself a stranger among scores of aliens'
Sponsored Article
‘Extremism can't be defeated on the battlefield alone’
People-watching: October 20th
The Local Voices
A layover at Qatar airport brought this Swedish-Kenyan couple together - now they're heading for marriage
Sponsored Article
Stockholm: creating solutions to global challenges
Swede punches clown that scared his grandmother
Sponsored Article
Why you should 'grab a chair' on Stockholm's tech scene
Fans throw flares and enter pitch in Swedish football riot
Sponsored Article
Where is the Swedish music industry heading?
Could Swedish blood test solve 'Making a Murderer'?
Sponsored Article
One expat's strategy for making friends in Stockholm
Swedish school to build gender neutral changing room
Sponsored Article
Nordic fashion in focus at Stockholm University
People-watching: October 14th-16th
Man in Sweden assaulted by clowns with broken bottle
Nobel Prize 2016: Literature
Watch the man who discovered Bob Dylan react to his Nobel Prize win
Record numbers emigrating from Sweden
People-watching: October 12th
The Local Voices
'Swedish startups should embrace newcomers' talents - there's nothing to fear'
How far right are the Sweden Democrats?
Property of the week: Triangeln, Malmö
The Local Voices
Syria's White Helmets: The Nobel Peace Prize would have meant a lot, but pulling a child from rubble is the greatest reward
jobs available