Solar Eclipse Safety Tips

You have probably heard a lot of buzz about the solar eclipse that is occurring on Monday, August 21st. It is the first coast-to-coast solar eclipse that the continental United States will experience since 1918. It is a rare occasion and many people are wondering how to safely enjoy it, while also getting the most out of the experience.

What Exactly Will Happen?

The moon will be passing between the Earth and the Sun. Some states will experience what is known as the path of totality. These states include Montana, Idaho, Wyoming, Kansas, Missouri, Kentucky, Illinois, and Tennessee as well as North and South Carolina and Georgia. Other parts of the country will still be able to see the eclipse occur, but will not be in direct view of an entire blockage.

Oregon will be the first to experience the event, with Lincoln Beach viewing it at 9:05 a.m. PDT. The full blockage will begin at 10:16am and from there it will begin to move across the other states until it concludes in Charleston, South Carolina at 2:48 pm EDT.

How to Enjoy it Safely

With this popular event, there are safety risks to be concerned with and it is important to understand inherit dangers to ensure that you are safely able to enjoy the event.

  • DO NOT STARE DIRECTLY AT THE ECLIPSE: Wear eye protection. Specialized glasses will block the UV rays when directly looking into the sun, something you do not get from regular sunglasses. Cameras, your phone camera, telescopes, and binoculars are also not safe to use.
  • Don’t rush – if you can’t go, you can’t go: With more and more people interested in the event as it draws closer, you may have a desire to travel to one of the 12 states to get a better view. Traveling will already be overcrowded and it’s recommended that you avoid trying to make last minute plans.
  • If you’re outdoors, be prepared: The sun will be blocked out which means visibility will drastically be reduced at this time. If you are traveling by car, make sure that you are not only aware of the change but also wary of other drives on the road who may be trying to grab a peak and are distracted.
  • Expect delays: Whether it’s traveling by car or plane, you can expect several delays and distractions. Be sure to account for that in your travel plans regardless of where you are at.
  • Be wary of fakes: There are glasses that are safe to use and there are glasses that are not. Make sure you are using approved solar eclipse safety glasses.

The solar eclipse is an experience we all want to enjoy. Be sure to follow these safety tips and make sure that you are not traveling at the time of the event.