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Portland man shares warning after being partially blinded by 196

19 Août 2017

REMEMBER: Looking directly at the sun, even when it is partially covered by the moon, can cause serious eye damage or blindness.

In 1962, Tomososki and a friend were walking home from Marshall High School in Portland, Oregon, and stopped to witness the partial solar eclipse at a baseball field. "He got the left eye and I got the right eye". "I have a little blind spot in the center of my right eye".

"Nothing has changed", he said. He said the vision problems never got any worse - but they also never got any better.

But just as many people are planning to head outside as the sky turns dark, experts warn looking directly into the sun can cause eye damage that can last a lifetime.

"Anyone who stares at the sun can get this blind spot", Dr. Russell N. Van Gelder, a professor of ophthalmology at University of Washington School of Medicine and clinical spokesman for the American Academy of Ophthalmology, told TODAY. The blind spot, he says, is about the size of a pea. The other half experience the damage their entire lives.

Using a pinhole projection is one method to view the solar eclipse safely
Using a pinhole projection is one method to view the solar eclipse safely

Van Gelder said it's safe to look directly at the sun only if you're in the area of totality - that 70-mile swath that will be plunged into darkness on Monday - and only for the duration of totality (a bit more than two minutes, depending on the location).

LSU Health New Orleans retina specialist Maria Reins says to look at the eclipse with your eyes, make sure you wear glasses that are IPSO 12312-2 certified because regular sunglasses arena'th enough. "The second the sun comes out, the eclipse glasses have to go back on".

For a list of approved vendors of solar eclipse glasses, visit the American Astronomical Association's website.

For his part, Tomososki hopes people learn from his story and protect themselves.

"A quick look like we did back in 1963, and I'm 71, nearly 71 now, that quick look cost us", Tomososki said.

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Portland man shares warning after being partially blinded by 196