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Protect Your Vision During the Solar Eclipse on April 8

Based on recommendations from Grey Bruce Public Health (GBPH), the City of Owen Sound is urging residents to resist the temptation to look directly at the sun during the upcoming solar eclipse and take steps to safeguard their visual health during this relatively rare celestial event. 

On Monday, April 8, parts of southern and eastern Ontario will experience a total solar eclipse for the first time since 1925. Grey-Bruce will be outside of the so-called Path of Totality – a narrow area where the moon will completely block out the sun – but will still experience a partial eclipse. During a Solar Eclipse, the environment will darken like dawn or dusk – prepare for distracted drivers/people! 

The eclipse is expected to begin at about 2 p.m. and continue until 4:30 p.m. The eclipse will peak around 3:20 p.m. in Owen Sound. 

It is never safe to stare directly at the sun, but it may be tempting to do so during a solar eclipse.

According to the Ontario Association of Optometrists, looking directly at the sun during an eclipse can cause retinal burns, blurred vision, and/or temporary or permanent loss of visual function. 

Damage to the eyes can occur without any sensation of pain. 

Where possible, schedule tasks indoors during the eclipse to reduce the likelihood of looking at the sun. If driving, continue as normal and avoid looking at the sun – depending on the sun position, use hats, shades, or visors that don’t allow any visible light to pass through, but do not drive wearing eclipse glasses. 

Grey Bruce Public Health advises the following: 

  • Do not look directly at the sun without proper eye protection during the solar eclipse. Looking at even a small sliver of the sun before or after the eclipse without proper eye protection can harm vision. 
  • Keep a close eye on children and other vulnerable family members during the eclipse to ensure they do not inadvertently look up at the sun without proper eye protection. 
  • To safely view the eclipse, ISO-certified eclipse glasses that meet the ISO 12312-2 international safety standard must be worn. Ensure these glasses are in good condition, without any wrinkles or scratches, and that they fully cover the entire field of vision. Put on the glasses when looking away from the sun, then look at the eclipse. Look away from the sun before taking the glasses off. 
  • Regular sunglasses or homemade filters will not protect the eyes. 
  • Viewing the eclipse through a camera/phone lens, telescope, binoculars, or any other optical device is unsafe. 
  • Other ways to safely experience the solar eclipse include watching a live stream of the event or creating and using an eclipse box or pinhole projector. 

Anyone experiencing temporary vision loss or blurred vision during or after the eclipse should speak with their eye care professional or healthcare provider as soon as possible. 

Anyone experiencing blindness (immediate or delayed) after viewing the eclipse must seek emergency care immediately. 

For more information, please contact Heidi Jennen, Supervisor of Environmental Services at 519-376-4440 ext. 3223 or email

Quick Facts: 

  • A solar eclipse is taking place on the afternoon of Monday, April 8. 
  • Looking directly at the sun during an eclipse can cause damage to the eyes. 
  • More information on the upcoming eclipse, including FAQs, is available on GBPH’s website


Solar Eclipse

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808 2nd Avenue East,
Owen Sound, ON
N4K 2H4
Phone: 519-376-1440
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