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The NYS task force has been preparing for April 8 since 2022



Rochester, New York – Governor Kathy Hochul is reminding visitors of many tips to ensure a joyful and safe experience as major preparations are underway in New York state for the impending total solar eclipse, an event that only comes around once in a lifetime.

To guarantee that everyone will enjoy April 8 in safety, Hochul assembled an interagency task team that has been working together for the past 17 months.

“We saw from the last experience many years ago that there were a lot of traffic jams and people running out of gas,” Hochul explained. “We’re not going to let that happen in New York. We’re New Yorkers and we’ll be prepared.”

Hochul is advising people to follow traffic laws, fill up their gas tanks, charge their electric cars, and be ready for congestion. To allow first responders to pass in the event of an emergency, she would like to urge drivers to never stop on the side of the road during an eclipse.

The commissioner of New York State’s Department of Homeland Security and Emergency Services, Jackie Bray, advises visitors to bring along blankets, drinks, snacks, and patience above all else.

“Do not assume that you are going to leave two hours before the eclipse and get home two hours after the eclipse,” she explained. “Plan to come early and stay late.”

Bray claims that there will be plenty of personnel for the event from the New York State Police, the NYS Thruway, and the NYS Department of Transportation.

“Help trucks from the DOT that will have a bit of extra gas supply on hand will be able to move people to safer places,” she said.

NYS reiterated safety advice in a public service announcement that was released on Monday and included Buffalo Bills players.

According to Kathryn Garcia, NYS’s director of state operations, staring directly at the sun during an eclipse without appropriate eye protection can result in irreversible eye damage. She advises consumers to purchase eclipse glasses from reputable retailers and to discard those that allow them to see your hand in front of your face while wearing them.

“Eclipse glasses will be available in limited quantities at our welcome centers and at our Thruway rest stops across the state,” Garcia said.

On April 8, state officials are advising citizens to use 511 as a resource to obtain up-to-date traffic information.