New York State Department of Health Releases Eclipse Safety PSA Urging Eclipse Watchers to Take Safety Precautions

Protecting Eyes and Preparing for Weather and Traffic Key to Enjoying the Celestial Spectacle

Watch State Health Commissioner Dr. James McDonald's Eclipse Safety Tips Public Service Announcement here

ALBANY, N.Y. (April 2, 2024) – The highly anticipated total solar eclipse of 2024 will cross New York State's afternoon sky on April 8th. Although it's an exciting, once-in-a-lifetime event, it's important to take some simple precautions to make sure your experience is safe and enjoyable.

"Looking directly at the sun without the correct eye protection--even for a short time--can cause permanent damage to your retinas, a light-sensitive part of the eye that transmits what you see to your brain," State Health Commissioner Dr. James McDonald said. "The only way to look at the sun when it's not eclipsed or is partially eclipsed is with a special solar filter, such as eclipse glasses or a handheld solar viewer. Regular sunglasses, no matter how dark, will not work. Please be particularly careful to protect small children who are at higher risk and may not understand the danger of staring at the sun during an eclipse."

Eclipse glasses and handheld solar viewers must meet the required ISO 12312-2 international standard.

Additionally, April in New York State can bring either a warm sun or lots of cold snow, so be prepared if you plan to be outdoors. If you must travel on the day of the eclipse, be aware that traffic is expected to be extremely heavy in most parts of the state.

Dr. McDonald's Public Service Announcement can be viewed here.

For more information on how to have fun while staying safe and to check out eclipse events in your area, go to New York State Solar Eclipse | View Info, Times & Maps (