HomePoliticsThe emergency operations plan guarantees "a great day" for Monday's eclipse, Ohio...

The emergency operations plan guarantees “a great day” for Monday’s eclipse, Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine says

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Ohio is pulling out all the stops for Monday’s total solar eclipse as it braces for potentially hundreds of thousands of visitors.

“I have to say that we don’t always get a lot of time leading up to events,” Sima Merick, director of the Ohio Emergency Management Agency, said at a news conference Friday. “Right? So the fact that we have worked on the development for 200 years has been very useful, I must say.”

During the event, the Republican Gov. said. Mike DeWine said it was 1806, just three years after Ohio became a state, when a total solar eclipse last crossed the state’s path. Next time will be 2099.

He activated the Ohio Emergency Operations Center starting Sunday so it will be operational before, during and after Monday’s celestial event to help communities deal with any issues that arise.

Adding anywhere from 100,000 to 500,000 tourists to the state’s existing population could put pressure on government agencies. He will have the National Guard on standby all weekend, but has not been able to activate soldiers in advance, he said.

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“Again, this is just a precaution. We think it’s smart to be ready,” he said. “We hope that planning for the eclipse ensures that everyone has a great day.”

A host of other government agencies – the state departments of Transportation, Public Safety, Health and Natural Resources, the Ohio State Highway Patrol and the Ohio National Guard – will all be present at the emergency operations centers, and most are also recruiting resources to the emergency response centers. event. The National Weather Service will also be present.

If emergency responders look at the eclipse as they would a major weather event, the Department of Natural Resources looks at it as if a large fireworks display is happening at the same time in each of the 23 state parks and five natural areas. said director Mary Mertz. All 300 state-appointed conservation officers will be on duty this weekend, she said. Extensive park programming around the solar eclipse, including hundreds of activities and viewing events, begins Saturday and runs through Monday.

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Ohio is limiting highway construction projects underway Monday so that as many lanes as possible are available to accommodate expected heavy traffic, transportation director Jack Marchbanks said. Officials encouraged travelers to bring extra snacks and water for themselves and any pets they may have with them; phone chargers; and paper route maps in case of mobile service disruptions.

Besides traffic, the other major risk associated with the eclipse is eye damage — which the Ohio Department of Health explained in a video, DeWine said. Marchbanks also noted that people should not drive with their eclipse glasses on.

Col. Charles Jones of the Ohio State Highway Patrol advised “planning, preparation and patience” regarding the eclipse. Stopping along the highway to view the eclipse is both illegal and dangerous, he said.

Travelers might consider delaying their trip home for a few hours after the eclipse to allow the crowds and traffic to dissipate if they are not staying overnight, DeWine said.

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