Don’t Just Look Up! … Take Precautions – and Drive Carefully

Be Sure To Take Proper Precautions When Viewing The Eclipse in New York City Next Monday Afternoon

April 3, 2024 — The Adams administration highlighted safety precautions ahead of the solar eclipse happening in New York City on April 8, during which 90 percent of the sun’s rays will be blocked by the moon. The administration reminded residents and visitors that they should avoid looking directly at the sun, wear protective eyewear, and use headlights if driving.

Whether in a park, on the street, or inside, looking at the sun without proper protection can cause an inability to see colors, loss of vision, or even permanent blindness.

Instead, follow the tips below to enjoy the upcoming eclipse and avoid causing eye damage.

  • Use a handheld solar viewer or eclipse viewing glasses -- not everyday sunglasses, no matter how dark they are. Glasses should meet ISO 12312-2 international safety standards;
    • The American Astronomical Society warns that some eclipse glasses and other solar viewers are labeled as ISO-compliant when in fact they have not been properly tested and shown to be safe. The Society provides a list of selected suppliers of solar viewers and filters that are safe when used properly
    • Glasses are available at the Brooklyn Public Library, Queens Public Library, and New York Public Library while supplies last. It is recommended to call in advance to ensure supplies are available.
    • Do not use eclipse glasses if they are more than three years old, if the lenses are scratched, punctured, torn, or if the lenses are wrinkled.
  • Do not use cameras, telescopes, or binoculars to view the eclipse without a special solar filter secured over the front. Do not look at the sun through an optical device while wearing eclipse glasses or using a handheld solar viewer.
  • If driving next Monday afternoon, motorists should use headlights, especially during the hours nearest 3:25pm, the time of the peak partial eclipse in New York City, when the sun will be 89.6% occluded.
  • If driving, walking, or cycling during the eclipse, slow down and watch for other people on the road. Distracted driving — from any distraction — is dangerous and drivers’ vision drops during dusk and darkness.

NYC Parks' Urban Park Rangers will be hosting eclipse viewing events in all five boroughs. At these free events, participants can borrow a pair of safety viewing glasses or take a look through our solar lens telescope for a memorable viewing experience.

The next total full solar eclipse visible in New York City will be on May 1, 2079.

For more information, see the American Astronomical Society's How to View a Solar Eclipse Safely.

Additional resources are also available at the I LOVE NY eclipse website.



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