Road tips to keep in mind if traveling for the eclipse

Road tips to keep in mind if traveling for the eclipse

MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) - It is the weekend of the Great American Solar Eclipse across the country.

While the eclipse isn't until Monday, millions are gearing up to celebrate the cosmic event. In and around our area in Alabama many are planning to hit the road to watch the event. If you're traveling, odds are you could find yourself in some traffic.

The path of totality is a 70-mile wide strip from Oregon through South Carolina where the moon will completely block the sun.

"The total eclipse is such a surrealistic experience. It's unlike anything you've ever seen," said Fred Espenak, former NASA scientist.

Millions are packing highways. Along the path, Seth Burket with Alabama Department of Transportation says they aren't changing their regular operations, but they are keeping a watchful eye.

"We will be prepared to respond if any issues arise due to the increase in traffic," said Burket.

If you are traveling there are some things to keep in mind.

"No stopping on the highways or the ramps or the shoulders except in case of emergency," said Burket.

Catching this glimpse of history isn't worth putting yourself in danger.

"You could be putting yourself at risk of being struck by another vehicle that's traveling through, I mean interstates are high speed expressways," Burket said.

Although totality will last less than 3 minutes, former NASA scientist Fred Espenak promises the experience will last a lifetime for those eclipse chasers.

"It really gives you a sense of elation, plus it's a humbleness to realize we are so tiny and small in this incredible universe where we get to see this spectacular natural phenomenon," said Espenak.
 
Patience is key when you're stuck in traffic be sure to plan ahead and have a full tank of gas.

While eclipse glasses can save your eyes, they're pretty dangerous to wear when you're driving. That's because when you put them on, you can't see anything.

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