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Safeguard Your Gaze: Essential Solar Eclipse Safety Tips for Northwestern PA


On April 8th, regions of Northwestern Pennsylvania will experience a total solar eclipse. To help you prepare for this stunning event, we have a few suggestions and reminders to ensure your safety and enjoyment of the solar eclipse. We’ll remind you of the dangers of looking directly at the eclipse, discuss a few things to avoid, and provide insight into what you can do to ensure your eyes are safe as you enjoy the astonishing solar display.

The dangers of looking directly at the solar eclipse

Looking directly at a partial solar eclipse without adequate UV protection is always dangerous. The only safe time to view a solar eclipse is during totality when the sun is completely obscured by the moon. However, even then, it should only be done with extreme caution. 

Directly viewing the solar eclipse poses risks of “eclipse blindness” or solar retinopathy. 

Symptoms of eclipse blindness include:

  • Alterations in color vision
  • Central vision loss
  • Distortions in vision

Sunglasses aren’t enough

Traditional sunglasses do not offer sufficient UV protection during a solar eclipse. While they are appropriate for daily use and filter out harmful UV rays, they do not filter out all visible light, which is essential for looking directly at the sun. Using standard or polarized sunglasses to view the solar eclipse can result in solar retinopathy

Beware of Phone Screens and Camera Lenses

Although it may appear to be a smart choice, looking at the eclipse indirectly through a phone screen or camera lens is actually quite dangerous. Looking through a camera lens can result in the same damage to your eyesight as looking at it directly, and viewing it from your phone can result in viewing the eclipse directly without even realizing it! 

The safest way to view the solar eclipse is with ISO-approved solar eyeglasses

Since viewing the eclipse requires looking directly at the sun, seek out ISO-approved solar glasses to use during the event. These lenses are made of a unique polymer material that filters out nearly all visible light. Look for the signifier ISO 12312-2 to know they will offer 100% UV coverage and keep your eyes safe during the eclipse! 

Don’t wait until the last minute to safely view the solar eclipse

Even though the eclipse is a few weeks away, it will arrive before you know it! 

Don’t miss out. You can find solar eclipse eyeglasses at our office for only $2 while supplies last. Get yours today!