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Gazing at 1963 eclipse for just 20 seconds partially blinded OR man


A total solar eclipse is slated to happen on Monday, as the Moon will cross in front of the Sun, blotting out the light from our favorite star for a couple of minutes along a 70-mile-wide swath of the US that runs from OR to SC.

Van Gelder said it's safe to look directly at the sun only if you're in the area of totality - that 70-mile swath that will be plunged into darkness on Monday - and only for the duration of totality (a bit more than two minutes, depending on the location). He noted that ever since he got it, the blind spot hasn't gotten any better or any worse.

Dr. Brandon Lujan of the Casey Eye Institute in OR tells KGW that looking at the solar eclipse for "even an instant" can damage the eyes. It was a total solar eclipse in Canada and Alaska, but the path of totality did not go through Oregon.

Nobody was talking about safety glasses back then, so he watched it with the naked eye, closing his left eye and leaving his right eye open.

He also stresses the light can damage a cell phone camera's sensors and says people need to use glasses over the sensor to take pictures of the eclipse.

"I'm going to go out and enjoy it". Unfortunately, Tomososki and Duval did not use one, which led to lifelong eye damage.


The sun's rays carry many different types of light that can cause physical and chemical damage to your vision.

They recommend you not look in the direction of the eclipse, they also stress that you don't wear the protective glasses while driving as this can be risky as well.

Image credit: Maurice FitzGerald / Flickr " Some damage occurs pretty quickly, but a lot of damage can take hours to days to really come to bear", Lujan told KPTV.

People with the condition show a characteristic pattern of eye damage during eye exams. In fact, even those who have already bought their eclipse glasses are still warned to check if they are safe and certified. And 55 years later, "Nothing has changed", he told TODAY.

It's a lesson Tomososki wishes he knew back in 1963. "The first thing they say is, 'You looked at a solar eclipse sometime in your life, '" he said. You might be giving those silly looking glasses the side-eye, wondering if you really, actually need to wear them during your eclipse-viewing extravaganza on August 21.

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