For the first time in 99 years, a total solar eclipse will be visible within a band across the U.S. today and people are understandably excited. But if you plan to view the event with squirmy little kids, it’s important to follow these safety tips to protect everyone.
Just like any other day, staring at the sun is a bad idea – So the first step should be putting on a pair of safety glasses. And make sure they’re the real deal. There are lots of knock-offs out there, so check your solar-filtering glasses to make sure they aren’t fakes. Also check them for scratches and scuffs, because those can affect their ability to protect your eyes.
Wear your safety glasses the entire time you’re watching the eclipse – The only time you are safe to take off the protective glasses is if you’re in the line of totality at the brief moment the moon fully blocks the sun. Then quickly put them right back on to finish watching. Everyone else with only a partial view should never take them off.
Here are some other safety tips from NASA:
- After watching the eclipse, turn away from the sun before taking off your glasses, don’t remove them while facing the sun.
- Don’t look at the eclipse through unfiltered lenses, including cameras or telescopes.
- If you wear glasses, keep them on and wear the eclipse glasses on top of them.
- Supervise kids the entire time with their safety solar glasses