COLUMBIA, SC (WLTX) - With the recent recalls and confusion about eclipse glasses in the Midlands, we gathered some tips to make sure you and your family safe.
1. Don't Use Sunglasses
Wearing sunglasses does dim the light from the sun but it's not enough to protect your eyes from the harmful rays of the eclipse. It's best to make sure the eclipse glasses you get have pitch black lenses. They should be dark enough to where you can't even see your hand in front of your face. When you raise the glasses up towards the sky, the only thing you should see is a dim yellow circle of the sun.
2. Check for Damage
NASA asks that you double-check to make sure that there is no kind of damage to your glasses. If you see any kinds of scratches on your lenses, you should discard them immediately.
3. Don't Watch the Eclipse Through a Telescope or Camera Lens
We checked in with Doctor Kelly Hynes with 20!20 Vision in Columbia on whether or not you can watch the eclipse through a camera lens or telescope. Hynes believes it's dangerous, even if you're wearing eclipse glasses when doing so.
"Definitely don't look through a telescope, not through a camera, or through binoculars because that will actually focus the damaging rays on the back of your eye and cause damage to the retina," Doctor Hynes said.
4. Don't Take Your Glasses Off Too Soon or Wait Too Long to Put Them Back On
Make sure you don't take off your eclipse glasses until the eclipse is in its totality. Chief Meteorologist Jim Gandy says timing is key.
"It's actually not a problem to take off the solar eclipse glasses. It's only when the moon completely covers the sun 100%. That's when you can take off the glasses and you have to, otherwise you won't see the sun's corona. That is the sun's atmosphere. That's the thing we can't see because the sun itself is so bright," Gandy said.
He also stresses that is extremely important to wear your glasses at all times if you are outside the path of totality.
"If you're outside of totality, even at 99.9%, you're going to have to wear the glasses the entire time, no exceptions," Gandy explained.
5. Use Our List to Find Eclipse Glasses and Make Sure They are Safe
Click here for an updated list of eclipse glasses here in the Midlands.
We will have a limited amount of eclipse glasses to give out at the WLTX Tailgate at the State Fairgrounds on the day of the solar eclipse.
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