On Monday, August 21 residents and visitors in Boone County will view one of the most spectacular sights in the natural world, a total solar eclipse. This is an opportunity for our community to put out the welcome mat to visitors from across the nation and the world as they visit to view this tremendous and historical occasion. While the day of the eclipse, specifically the weather, will illustrate what we can expect, doing a few things beforehand will ensure you and your loved ones are well prepared for the event.
Be sure to remember that traffic will be heavy, at times very heavy in and around Boone County. Boone County Emergency Management urges folks to add plenty of extra time to get to your destination. Whether you are going to work, school or to view the eclipse, please allow for abundant extra time. Traffic will be most heavy in the three to five hours after totality, however prior to the eclipse traffic may be very heavy as well. Please have a plan that includes ample time to travel to and from your destination.
Heavy traffic on all major roads and many surface roads is to be expected. Please be mindful of this when you leave the house and bring with you a healthy dose of patience as any trip that afternoon may take longer than it usual. When traveling in areas of heavy pedestrian traffic, please be very vigilant with regards to those who may be unfamiliar with the area or distracted while walking, especially during the eclipse.
Do not attempt to view the eclipse while driving, instead, take a break and pull off the roadway to view the event; better yet arrive early at a prime location to watch the eclipse. Citizens, residents and visitors are reminded to wear eye protection that meets or exceeds standards established for such viewing glasses. Staring at the sun will cause damage to your eyes as well as photography equipment.
Boone County Emergency Management, along with our partner agencies stand ready to be of service during this event. Our staff will start at 7:00 am the day of the eclipse and remain in service until any issues are resolved. With some preplanning, patience and awe we can all enjoy this rare event. Be safe, give yourself extra time and relax while nature puts on a show for all of us to see.
Boone County Emergency Management Coordinating for Eclipse
Boone County Emergency Management, along with partner agencies in our community, stand ready to be of service to the community during the upcoming solar eclipse. Our office has been in frequent contact with other response and recovery agencies from across our community to ensure we are as well prepared as possible.
The planning for the upcoming eclipse event started well over one year ago with planning meetings. These meetings included a diverse group of attendees representing various response and recovery professionals, volunteers and subject matter experts as well as local government officials. As the day of the eclipse draws near, our community is well prepared for the influx of people and national attention as the day briefly becomes dark.
According to Terry Cassil, Director of Emergency Management “Our staff will be in service throughout the weekend to monitor events locally across Boone County.” Adding that Emergency Management will have a primary mission of coordination and communication across the emergency services community will continue into Monday as we open our Emergency Operations Center that morning for any partner agency that would like to join us as we coordinate resources and monitor, in real time, local conditions and events.
Although major disruptions are not anticipated in our community, the Office of Emergency Management does ask residents to be prepared for heavy traffic in the days leading up to, and including the day of the eclipse; residual traffic the day after the event may be heavy as well. Citizens are encouraged to have additional water and food available if they will be traveling to view the eclipse, even if travel is limited to the local area. Also, citizens should allow extra time on Monday for all travel, especially in the three to five hours after the eclipse as traffic will be especially heavy around that time.
Over the next few days, our community will be in the national and international spotlight as a function of the solar eclipse. The Boone County Office of Emergency Management is prepared, able and looking forward to working with members of our community during this truly unique event.