The metro-east might be out of luck — forecasters say there is a good chance clouds will obscure people’s ability to view the solar eclipse as it passes through the metro-east.
While there is 30 percent chance of these storms after 4 p.m., National Weather Service meteorologist Patrick Walsh said they are expecting about 50 percent cloud coverage of the sun itself during today’s eclipse – when the moon passes directly into the sun’s path. The skies will darken nonetheless, but cloudy or rainy conditions may prevent onlookers from seeing the sun and moon themselves.
“There will be clouds; we are looking at probably some thin high clouds which won’t totally obscure it,” he said. “So, hopefully you will be able to see some of it, there will be some spots where there will be some thicker clouds.”
Walsh noted Monday morning there was a weather system in Iowa bringing clouds into the region. He said meteorologists were still monitoring the conditions.
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“I think there will be some areas where it may not be as conducive to visibility; clouds are tricky,” Walsh said. “If they are high clouds and they are thin enough — I think most people will be OK. If the clouds do decide to stay a little thicker, we will have some issues.”
As of Monday morning, the National Center for Environmental Information still called for an 80 percent chance of visibility in Carbondale. The Southern Illinois town right in the line of totality will likely see rain and storms only after 5 p.m.
The eclipse will cross directly over five state capitals and an estimated 12 million Americans live in the path of solar eclipse totality, according to the environmental group.
The total eclipse will occur in Carbondale at 1:19 p.m., but if you can’t make it down south, here’s where you can view the solar eclipse in the metro-east.
And before you buy or use eclipse glasses, make sure they are ISO 12312-2 certified. A long list of retailers and organizations in the metro-east were providing glasses for free or at a low cost. However, as of Thursday, most places reported being out of stock.
Other than showers, the metro-east should remain partly sunny with a high near 93 degrees with the heat index values reaching as high as 101 degrees.