This is a difficult question to answer because there are opposing schools of thought. However, the mere fact that it is a difficult question to answer means that there is very little data to report (ie. few if any injuries are known). According to data from the FDA, Rockwell Laser Industries, and the U.S. Consumer Protection Agency, there are no known cases of accidental injury from Class 3A (IIIR) or 3B (IIIB) laser beams emanating from properly built and certified projectors used in an entertainment setting.
Are there cases where someone has intentionally injured themselves or someone else? Yes, a very few. Are there cases of injuries from very high powered entertainment lasers? Yes, a few and mostly undocumented. Is it possible to injure someone with a 3A/3B laser system? Yes, and that is why we preach safety and the importance of having properly built lasers at every turn. However, we are heartened that among Class 3B high powered FDA certified entertainment laser projectors, like X-Lasers, there are no known cases of injury in the United States, ever.
We are proud to make laser products which are certified to exceed the world’s most stringent standards of performance and safety. We feel that with a little education and a reasonable amount of attention to safety that it should be possible for virtually anyone to operate an X-Laser safely.
To conclude, let us put this into a bit of perspective. By contrast, and this is totally true, the Consumer Product Safety Commission’s 2009 report lists the following estimated injury tallies from 2009 alone – among millions of others – from injuries serious enough that they required a visit to a local emergency room:
12,057 injuries from batteries.
18,691 injuries from holiday party supplies
34,189 injuries from soap.
142,515 injuries from carpets and rugs
… and a whopping 644,175 injuries from ‘beds, mattresses & pillows’
In that same period of time, how many people were hurt by a laser? Three. One had a laser poked into his eye and left the ER without needing treatment. Another suffered bite marks on his leg after using a laser pointer to taunt a stray cat, and the third was doing a magic trick and shoved the laser pointer too far up his nose. No kidding.