Here in southwest Washington and northern Oregon, we have a prime view of the total solar eclipse happening on Monday, August 21, 2017.
In Oregon, the eclipse will start at 9:06 a.m. and will end at 11:38 a.m., lasting for a total of two hours and 32 minutes.
During this historic event, it's important that everybody recognizes a few safety concerns to ensure safety.
At all points of the solar eclipse, it's extremely important that you have and are wearing a pair of reputable solar eclipse glasses.
According to the American Astronomical Society, there are plenty of solar eclipse glasses sold by various vendors that have been found to be scams. Here, you can find a list of reputable vendors.
According to the Oregon Department of Transportation, the eclipse is expected to be the biggest traffic event in the state of Oregon's history – drawing about one million people to the zone of totality to view the event.
With southwest Washington's proximity to Portland, I-5 is expected to have thousands of cars added to the already extremely congested commute.
With the projected large number of added cars on the road, it's important that you drive both safely, as well as defensively to ensure you get to your destination safely.
If you must drive on August 21, follow these rules to get to your destination safely:
- Do not wear eclipse glasses while driving. If the glasses do what they're supposed to, you won't be able to see anything but the sun.
- Do not try driving and looking at the eclipse simultaneously. Distracted driving is dangerous.
- Do not camp out at rest stops.
- Don't park your car on the shoulder. Emergency vehicles may need to get through.
- Make sure your car is in good, working condition. Also have enough supplies for a few days in case you get stranded
Lastly, if you decide to camp for the solar eclipse, ensure that you pack everything out that you pack in, and be careful to not start any forest fires.
- Comply with all local laws and regulations set in place.
- Check the weather, and don't burn anything if the conditions are hot, dry, and have a wind.
- Only use controlled areas for burning such as a fire pit.
- Do not burn anything unusual or combustible.
- Do not throw cigarette butts on the ground or out a car window.