SC officials estimate 1 million visitors to view eclipse, urge p - FOX Carolina 21

SC officials estimate 1 million visitors to view eclipse, urge patience and safety

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Solar eclipse (Courtesy: AP Graphics) Solar eclipse (Courtesy: AP Graphics)
COLUMBIA, SC (FOX Carolina) -

South Carolina’s military and safety leaders said during a meeting in Columbia on Thursday that one million visitors were expected to journey to the state for the total solar eclipse.

The eclipse will occur on August 21. Several Upstate cities are in the path of totality and will experience more than two minutes of total darkness when the moon passes between the earth and the sun.

On Thursday, Adjutant General of South Carolina Major General Robert E. Livingston, SC Emergency Management Division Director Kim Stenson, SC Department of Public Safety Director Leroy Smith, SC Dept. of Natural Resources, Dr. Lillian Peake with DHEC, and SCDOT State Traffic Management Engineer Rob Perry outlined safety plans and discussed precautions recommended for residents, visitors and businesses preparing for the astronomical spectacle.

The general theme was that people should be patient, use common sense and follow the same safety practices that are used at dusk and dawn: vehicles on the roads should burn headlights and boats on the water should burn their lights as well.

Perry advised people to expect heavy traffic on the roads. He said drivers should keep moving. Don't stop on the side of the road or try to watch while driving. Perry said drivers should not operate vehicles while wearing eclipse viewing glasses.

The Highway Patrol urge people to plan ahead and have somewhere safe, off of the road, to park and watch.

Peake urged people to think about the heat, avoid alcohol, stay hydrated, and stay in shaded areas. She said people should also remember to wear sunscreen and protect their eyes by using eclipse viewing glasses.

DNR advised that lakes will be busy and urged boaters to use extra caution on the water.

Officials advised that many hotels were already booked up for August 21 surrounding dates.

READ MORE: SC Emergency Management officers urge visitors, residents, to have solar eclipse safety plan

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