On Monday, April 8, Haldimand and Norfolk counties will be two of the few places in Canada within the path of totality for the solar eclipse. The path of totality is a narrow strip where the moon will completely cover the sun – blocking out its light.

The eclipse is expected to begin around 2:00 p.m. and finish around 4:31 p.m. The total eclipse will begin at 3:16 p.m. in Norfolk and 3:17 p.m. in Haldimand, lasting approximately three minutes. The team at the Haldimand-Norfolk Health Unit (HNHU) wants residents and visitors to experience the beauty of the solar eclipse while prioritizing their safety.

“This is an exciting event, but one that doesn’t come without some risk,” says Dr. Lock, Medical Officer of Health. “The Health Unit wants to remind people to enjoy the eclipse safely by protecting their eyes and taking precautions when driving.”

Looking directly at the sun, even during an eclipse, can cause serious and permanent damage to the eyes. There are no pain sensors in your retinas and symptoms can sometimes take 12 to 48 hours to appear. Once symptoms start, it is usually too late to reverse the damage.

To prevent eye damage, only use solar eclipse viewers or filters that meet the ISO 12312-2 international standard when viewing the eclipse. Regular sunglasses will not protect your eyes. Individuals can also use indirect viewing methods such as pinhole projectors or watching the eclipse through a live stream.

In addition to eye safety, the HNHU urges caution for those traveling during the eclipse; sudden changes in lighting conditions and increases in traffic can pose challenges for drivers.

By planning and sharing this valuable information with friends and family, the community can experience a safe and enjoyable eclipse.

For more information on safe viewing and driving tips during the solar eclipse, please visit