Next Monday millions of Americans of all ages, including tens of thousands of Oregonians, will don special eyeglasses to watch the eclipse.
They will do so in the belief these special eyeglasses will protect them from harmful rays of the sun.
I want everyone who witnesses this amazing celestial event to be safe.
So, please, listen up – in order to protect your own eyes and those of your family and fellow Oregonians.
The key to watching the eclipse safely is getting solar glasses that will protect your eyes’ retinas.
Sadly, con artists are at it again, resulting in UNSAFE solar glasses and handheld solar viewers being purchased by eclipse watchers.
Just the other day Amazon issued refunds to some of its customers, saying they could not verify that certain of the solar eclipse glasses it had sold came from a recommended manufacturer, even though they were stamped with the correct ISO number.
Consumers need to be able to trust that glasses and viewers stamped with ISO 12312-2 meet that international safety standard.
But I am concerned some consumers might rely on counterfeit glasses or viewers.
Please: Don’t take any chances. Be certain your glasses or viewers meet the standard by purchasing them from reputable vendors.
The American Astronomical Society has an online list of reputable vendors here: www.eclipse.aas.org.
From a legal perspective, Oregon’s Unlawful Trade Practice Act (UTPA) prohibits a business from making unlawful, false or misleading representations. Advertising solar glasses and handheld solar viewers as falsely meeting the International Organization for Standardization or ISO and attaching a label indicating that the product meets the ISO 12312-2 international safety standard constitutes a deceptive practice under this law.
Any Oregon consumer who believes he or she has purchased counterfeit or otherwise unsafe solar glasses or handheld solar viewers should contact the Oregon Department of Justice’s Consumer Complaint Hotline by calling 877-877-9392 or by filing a complaint online.
Most important: I hope every Oregonian who wants to will get to observe and enjoy this once-in-a-lifetime spectacle without suffering harm to their vision.