Beware of fraudulent eclipse glasses

By: 
CHRIS MCCONNELL
Outlook staff writer
Outlook photo by Chris McConnell. Although labeled as “eclipse glasses” these counterfeit glasses from China were brought in by local Optometrist Dr. Ron Benner. They have the ISO label but will damage users eyes. Anyone viewing the eclipse needs to verify the safety of their glasses.

Looking directly at the sun during a partial solar eclipse–even at 93 percent coverage–can result in irreparable eye damage or blindness. Do not look at the partial solar eclipse at any time without special eye protection. Even the darkest sunglasses do not block enough of the sunlight for safe viewing.
Laurel Optometrist Dr. Ron Benner brought a package of fake eclipse glasses to the Outlook and encouraged people to take a minute and be certain they have safe glasses.
Just because they are labeled as eclipse glasses with the ISO stamp doesn’t mean they are safe.
“Most reputable companies are from the U.S. and will be labeled with ISO 12312-2, if they don’t have that number, don’t use them,” Benner said.
He encouraged viewers to take a minute and confirm their glasses are safe. The American Astronomical Society has a website devoted to eclipse viewing safety with lists of reputable companies and vendors: https://eclipse.aas.org/resources/solar-filters
A representative from the AAS said normal sunglasses typically let in between 10 and 20 percent of daylight, but the filters that are safe for looking at the sun are typically 100,000 times darker.
Welding goggles designed for electric arc welding can be safely used and must have a shade scale number of at least 12. A scale of thirteen is ideal for solar viewing, according to the AAS.

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