BUFFALO, NY - Depending on where you're watching from, Western New Yorkers are expected to see anywhere from 70-75% of the sun blocked out during the total solar eclipse on August 21st.
That means at no point will it be safe for eclipse spotters to look directly at the sun; the only time any kind of protective glasses can be taken off safely is when the sun is fully covered.
"It won't cause you to go blind immediately, but it will cause damage, so its just like on any normal day, you don't want to look at the sun without proper eye protection," said Kevin Williams, director of the Whitworth Ferguson Planetarium at Buffalo State.
After Amazon's recall of protective glasses, safety concerns have peaked with less than a week to go until the eclipse, so how do you know if you're protected?
Here are three things to check for:
-An ISO certified code 1-2-3-1-2-2.
-A logo and address of a reputable source on the side, whether it's a national organization like NASA, or a trusted local source like Buffalo State's Planetarium.
-A date less than 3 years old (2014).
"If the film on the glasses is scratched, or warped at all, or if you can see anything else besides the sun through it, its not safe," Williams added.
People in Western New York who are still looking for glasses can visit the Planetarium, along with the Buffalo Museum of Science, the Buffalo & Erie County Public Library, the Buffalo & Erie County Botanical Gardens, Penn Dixie in Blasdell, and the Reinstein Woods in Depew.
Here is a list of viewing locations that will provide telescopes, projectors, and a number of activities for those in attendance:
-Buffalo & Erie County Public Library Central Branch
-Buffalo Museum of Science
-Calvin E. Krueger Park in Wilson, 350 Ontario Street (Route 18), Village of Wilson
-Penn Dixie Fossil Park & Nature Preserve
-Whitworth Ferguson Planetarium at Buffalo State College
No matter where you are, the partial eclipse begins at 1:11 p.m. EDT until 3:51 p.m. EDT, with the maximum coverage at 2:33:55.
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