#EclipseOnFOX: Last minute FREE SOLAR ECLIPSE glasses at the Smithsonian; ECLIPSE driving tips

- It’s almost time for the 2017 SOLAR ECLIPSE to pass over the Washington, D.C., Maryland and Virginia area!

Here is the latest from the FOX 5 team.

SMITHSONIAN FREE ECLIPSE GLASSES

FOX 5's Anjali Hemphill visited the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum on the National Mall where crowds gathered for a chance to get a pair of Solar Eclipse glasses.

The museum is making a limited number of eclipse glasses available to the public. Glasses are distributed on a first-come first-served basis with a maximum of 2 glasses per group while supplies last.

The eclipse will be visible in Washington, DC, from 1:17 pm to 4:01 pm EDT, with maximum eclipse at 2:42 pm EDT. You can find the best time in your area with NASA's interactive map.

SOLAR ECLIPSE 2017 DRIVING TIPS

Our area is expected to get an 83 percent "partial" eclipse and nighttime-like conditions beginning at 1:18 p.m., with maximum coverage at 2:42 p.m. and ending at 4:01 p.m.

Here is what to prepare for:

- Don't stop along the interstate or park on the shoulder during the event.

- Exit the highway to a safe location to view and/or photograph the eclipse.

- Don't take photographs while driving - keep your attention on the road ahead.

- Don't try to wear opaque eclipse glasses while operating a vehicle.

- Turn your headlights on -- do not rely on your automatic headlights when the eclipse blocks out the sun.

- Use extra caution if your travels take you through a work zone during the eclipse.

- Watch out for pedestrians and bicyclists. People may be randomly parking and walking alongside the roadside during the time of the eclipse to get a good view.

- Prepare for extra congestion, especially on the interstates the day before, day of and day after the eclipse.

- Avoid travel during the eclipse or in an area with expected eclipse viewers.

ONLINE: http://www.roads.maryland.gov/pages/release.aspx?newsId=2949

SOLAR ECLIPSE EYE DANGERS

Ophthalmologist , Dr. Shilpa Rose, reviews the dangers of viewing the 2017 SOLAR ECLIPSE without taking the proper safety precautions.

How to View the 2017 Solar Eclipse Safely | NASA

- Always inspect your solar filter before use; if scratched or damaged, discard it. Read and follow any instructions printed on or packaged with the filter.

- Always supervise children using solar filters.

- Stand still and cover your eyes with your eclipse glasses or solar viewer before looking up at the bright sun. After looking at the sun, turn away and remove your filter — do not remove it while looking at the sun.

- Do not look at the uneclipsed or partially eclipsed sun through an unfiltered camera, telescope, binoculars, or other optical device.

- Similarly, do not look at the sun through a camera, a telescope, binoculars, or any other optical device while using your eclipse glasses or hand-held solar viewer — the concentrated solar rays will damage the filter and enter your eye(s), causing serious injury.

- Seek expert advice from an astronomer before using a solar filter with a camera, a telescope, binoculars, or any other optical device. Note that solar filters must be attached to the front of any telescope, binoculars, camera lens, or other optics.

- USA map with eclipse pathIf you are within the path of totality (https://go.nasa.gov/2pC0lhe (link is external)), remove your solar filter only when the moon completely covers the sun’s bright face and it suddenly gets quite dark. Experience totality, then, as soon as the bright sun begins to reappear, replace your solar viewer to look at the remaining partial phases.

- Outside the path of totality, you must always use a safe solar filter to view the sun directly.

- If you normally wear eyeglasses, keep them on. Put your eclipse glasses on over them, or hold your handheld viewer in front of them.

MORE: https://eclipse2017.nasa.gov/safety

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