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Locals! Let Us Help You Prepare for the Eclipse!
- Posted On
- Aug 15, 2017
- Local News
Activities near Yellowstone
Less than a week and the continental United States will get to experience the first total solar eclipse since 1979. For many, this will be their first opportunity to view one. And people are getting excited! Hotspots for the eclipse are already warning non-essential businesses to close down that day because of the influx of people that are estimated to show up for this rare event.
Living in Southeast Idaho, you’ve probably heard the news. So, Idaho Falls Magazine has gathered up these tips to help you prepare, not only for the eclipse itself, but for the crowds it is anticipated to bring by the end of this week.
East Idaho has been said to be one of the best places to view the eclipse, and because of this, upwards of 500,000 people are predicted to arrive. With all of these people coming, an array of problems can present themselves and we want you to be prepared.
Be prepared for traffic to be slow going through major cities and their main roads. If you have any errands to run, plan on doing them now or waiting until the event is over and the crowds have dispersed. Be careful if you plan on driving during the eclipse as well. In fact, it might be in your best interest to park for the two and a half minutes of the total eclipse, to prevent accidents due to distracted drivers and pedestrians.
2. Cell phones
If you have any important calls to make, you might want to do that now, or again, wait until the crowds are gone.
According to East Idaho News, Idaho Falls Fire Department Deputy Chief Dave Coffrey said, “I can tell you right now your cell phone is not going to work. We’re working with the wireless providers in our area and looking at putting up some COWs – Cell on Wheels. Verizon has already told us they’re not interested in doing that so I’m not sure how much traction that’s going to get. “
Plan on getting any groceries you need before the crowds arrive. Our stores weren’t meant to be stocked up for 5 times our population, which is the number of people anticipated to arrive. Beat the crowds to get any items you might need in the next week, or you might not have it until the next shipments come in after the eclipse.
For any public businesses that plan on staying open, have extra staff on hand, because you are going to get busy – especially if you are in the food or entertainment industry. With the eclipse only lasting a couple minutes, and people driving from hundreds of miles around to view it, they are going to be looking for things to do while waiting for the eclipse, or directly after. So be prepared for some good business, with extra hands on deck should you need them.
5. Medical Emergencies
Play it safe. Obviously, we don’t plan for accidents to happen, so do your best to prevent any medical emergencies. Local EMTs are planning on being extremely busy and calls will be based on priority if it gets to the point that there aren’t enough ambulances for every call.
6. The Total Solar Eclipse
And finally, we still want you to enjoy the eclipse. This event is once in a lifetime for some people, and those of us who live on the August 2017 solar eclipse trail should be able to enjoy it too. While it is safe to look at the sun when it is completely blocked out by the moon, this will only be for a short time, so make sure to pick up some eclipse glasses (sold at just about every retail and grocery store) to safely view the partial eclipse leading up to and following the total eclipse. The eclipse is expected for 11:30-11:35 a.m. for Eastern Idaho. Have friends over for breakfast and sit out on your porch with your glasses ready to go. Have fun!
We hope these tips will help you be safe, prepare and enjoy this spectacular event.