Here are some tips from WSLM and WRLW to make your solar eclipse viewing spectacular and galactic:
– Be prepared for hot weather. Temps in mid-to-late August can be in the 90s.
– Bring plenty of water – about a gallon a day per person.
– Bring sun screen, insect repellant, and first aid items.
– Bring picnic or snack items. Restaurants and grocery stores may experience long lines.
– Pick a viewing location with rest rooms and easy access to restaurants or other source of food.
– Do not stop along highways. Vehicles on the shoulder hinder traffic flow and create a traffic hazard.
– Be prepared for long lines at fuel pumps. Access to fuel may be limited.
– Be aware that heavy traffic congestion may interfere with delivery of food, fuel and other supplies along the total eclipse corridor.
– Be careful – while local agencies are gearing up for large crowds, heavy traffic may hinder the ability of emergency agencies to respond.
– Be patient – you are likely to encounter slow-moving traffic at some point during your visit.
– Bring a GPS based navigation unit as cell phone navigation may be sketchy due to heavy cell and data traffic.
– If your group is traveling in several vehicles consider communicating with two-way radios as cell service near the total eclipse corridor may be limited due to heavy demand.
Even the Indiana Department of Transportation has thought ahead to provide some road safety rules.
INDOT officials urge motorists to plan for traffic congestion expected to occur in southern Indiana before and after the total solar eclipse on Monday, August 21.
Approximately 200 million people live within a day’s drive of the total eclipse path. Many will be on the road to get a closer view.
INDOT officials offer the following advice:
Be prepared for traffic congestion before and after the August 21 eclipse.
Interstate 69, U.S. 41, and U.S. 231 are expected to experience increased traffic in southbound lanes before the event as caravans of motorists head for Western Kentucky where the moon’s full eclipse of the sun can be viewed within a 70-mile-wide swath encompassing Hopkinsville, Paducah, and Madison, KY. After the event, transportation planners anticipate a “mass exodus” from total eclipse regions. Expect heavier than normal northbound traffic on these routes.
Interstate 65 will also see increased traffic – going to and returning from – total eclipse vantage points that begin at Bowling Green, KY and extend beyond Nashville, TN. Again, southbound traffic is expected to rise before the solar eclipse. Northbound lanes will experience congestion after the eclipse.
If you want to drive toward the eclipse path for better viewing, allow extra time.
If skies are clear, August 21’s solar eclipse promises to be an unforgettable celestial phenomenon, the first that has been visible to all 48 contiguous states in several hundred years. Beyond the total eclipse’s 70-mile-wide path–which arcs across 14 states from Oregon to South Carolina–a partial eclipse will provide a sky show that becomes more and more pronounced the closer spectators get to the sun’s full black-out. The partial eclipse can be well seen throughout Indiana, but traveling south improves the view. For example, Evansville is situated to experience a partial eclipse of 99 percent and Jeffersonville will see 96 percent. This mid-day event waxes and wanes over a period of several hours.
Make plans now for overnight accommodations – overnight camping is prohibited at rest areas.
If planning to view the eclipse, wear safety glasses. They are available on-line or from many popular retailers costing from $2 to $70; some are being given away by organizations. DO NOT look at the partial eclipse without proper filtration. Visit the NASA website at http://eclipse2017.nasa.gov.
Do’s & Don’ts:
- Don’t take pictures while driving.
- Don’t wear eclipse glasses while driving.
- Don’t stop along the interstate or park on the shoulder.
- Do turn your headlights on during the eclipse event.
Plan Ahead and Stay Informed
Motorists can learn about highway work zones and other traffic alerts at indot.carsprogram.org, 1-800-261-ROAD (7623) or 511 from a mobile phone.