Watching The Solar Eclipse: What You Need To Know


Kay Smythe News and Commentary Writer
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A solar eclipse will wash over the U.S. on April 8 and you’re all going absolutely mental for it, so let’s dig into what you can expect.

Only a small portion of the U.S. will be in the “totality” of the April 8 solar eclipse but it’ll be seen by anywhere from 40 to 50 million people. The trajectory of the event will start over Mexico before moving through Texas, Arkansas, Illinois, Missouri, Indiana, Ohio, New York, Vermont, New Hampshire and Maine before it will head out over Canada.

The 115-mile-wide stretch of the totality will be where the moon completely covers the sun, according to NASA. It’ll start in Texas at 1:27pm CDT and ends in Maine at 3:35pm EST, according to Live Science. NASA shared a detailed list of where you’ll see the eclipse in your state. But you need to do a few things before Monday to prepare.

Apparently you’ll need to teach your children not to stare directly into the eclipse. Teachers in many schools within the path of totality are unwilling to teach your kids about this incredible scientific experience, so they decided to take a day off and force you to do the same. (RELATED: We Basically FaceTimed Earth From The Moon 55-Years-Ago But Only Just Went Back? Make It Make Sense)

Totality is the only time you can look up to the sun directly without it being dangerous, Live Science stated, but I still don’t trust myself or most other people to do this sensibly. It is probably safest to get proper glasses — not regular sunglasses, according to NASA.

The eclipse will barely last in totality for a few minutes at most, so it is fairly safe to say there’s a risk of exposure to the time around totality when the sun is still partially visible.

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) issued air travel warnings ahead of the event due to potential travel hold-ups. “Special air traffic procedures” have been developed for pilots, the FAA said. All you consumers of the solar eclipse will have to worry about is the sky-high fares charged by private companies to watch the event. (RELATED: Earth’s Extra Moons May Hold Keys To Our Past, Scientists Say)

People in all 50 states will be able to see a partial or total eclipse in 2024, according to Live Science. We hope you enjoy it!