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Local News


EMA Director Urges Motorists to Use Caution During Eclipse

Mon, 14 Aug 2017 09:03:04 CDT

Montgomery County Emergency Management Director Greg Nimmo is warning county residents who plan to travel on Monday, August 21, to view the solar eclipse in the southern Illinois and Missouri areas, to be aware of potential traffic jams and crashes that could result from drivers focusing on the skies and not the road during the eclipse.

Nimmo informs residents to not stand on the interstate, pull their car over, or take a selfie from a bridge. He said the risk of driver distraction from this once-in-a-lifetime event has never been greater. He added that it's up to local residents and visitors to follow common sense rules to stay safe, and that the eclipse is clearly a transportation issue.

About 200 million people across the country live within a day's drive of the path of totality for the August 21st Eclipse, and millions are expected to flock there for the event.

Nimmo urges motorists to plan ahead and find a safe spot to view the eclipse. He said that pulling onto the shoulder of a highway is a bad idea because it could block emergency vehicles from getting thru and put drivers who get out to watch the event at risk of being struck by a car. Motorists on local streets need to pay special attention to pedestrians and cyclists, who may themselves be focused on the eclipse.

State transportation officials recommend that people find an event or designated location to safely watch the eclipse. Many state parks, for example, are hosting events or reserving areas to accommodate campers and day visitors.


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