Aug 16, 2017
By Michael Kramer
As excitement builds about the August 21st solar eclipse – experts are urging people to take good care of their eyes.
Ralph Chou – a University of Waterloo optometry professor and president of the Toronto Centre of the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada – reminds people that staring at the sun for more than a few seconds will cause harm.
He says because the eye feels no pain it’ll be too late to look away from potential retina-burning solar rays – before a viewer realizes they’ve done potentially permanent damage.
And Chou says sunglasses aren’t adequate for direct viewing of an eclipse – because they allow in thousands of times more sunlight – than is safe for your eyes.
According to NASA special solar eclipse glasses should be marked on the label with the “ISO 12312-2” international safety standard.
Those glasses are relatively cheap but they’re becoming hard to find – as the Monday event approaches.
Here in the Toronto area we’ll see about 70 percent of the sun eclipsed by the moon – by 2:32 on Monday afternoon.