How to view the solar eclipse without damaging your eyes

NEW ORLEANS - The Great American Solar Eclipse is coming! While the Gulf Coast isn't in the path of totality, we still have the opportunity to see a few hours of a partial eclipse and you'll want to proper eye wear to keep yourself safe!

First off, sunglasses ARE NOT safe to use at ANY TIME during an eclipse. The lenses of your regular sunglasses do not filter out enough light to allow you to look directly at the sun. Instead you'll need a proper set of glasses with an approved filter for looking at the sun.

The first thing you need to look for is to see if the glasses are ISO 12312-2 compliant. This is a complicated number that doesn't mean much to most folks, but it does let you know that the lenses meet the requirements to allow users to look directly at the sun. You'll find this written inside the frames, usually on the left side of the lenses.

Once you've ordered and received your glasses, inspect them to ensure there are no scratches, tears or damage to the lenses. Any damage can increases the amount of light that can pass through the filter, potentially allowing enough light through to be damaging. Only uses glasses that arrive in perfect condition.

So grab those frames and head outside on Monday, August 21. The partial eclipse will begin in our area at 12:59 p.m. and end at 2:28 p.m. The prime time for viewing will be the maximum eclipse, around 75% of the sun blocked for our area at 1:43 p.m.