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Indiana officials expect massive crowds for total eclipse

Homeland security preparing for April total eclipse

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — It’s being called an event on the scale of 8 Super Bowls in one day.

Indiana is in the path of a total solar eclipse on April 8, Plunging most of the state into darkness for several minutes.

Emergency Management Director for Hamilton County Shane Booker said officials had another meeting Thursday to iron out details of how they will be ready.

“Right now, we’re talking about planning and what it is that we can help to ensure that our communities are ready,” said Booker.

Hundreds of thousands of eclipse watchers are expected to descend on central Indiana. Booker is urging those with doctors appointments or other plans to postpone them.

“Some of the municipalities, cities, and towns are looking at establishing public safety corridors, to keep them open so those people who need to get to the hospital or other locations, that they are able to get them there,” said Booker.

Hamilton County will have its emergency operations center open on the day of the eclipse, as will Indiana’s Department of Homeland Security.

Emergency Management and Preparedness Director Mary Moran said state officials have met with most of Indiana’s counties each month now for almost a year

“To address health and safety issues, to deal with if there are overdoses in a crowd situation, if there is a bad actor who initiates some kind of event in a crowded setting,” said Moran.

Those planning to drive anywhere to watch the solar eclipse are advised to pack plenty of food and water, and have a full tank of gas because traffic could be at a standstill for hours.

“We’re planning for trying to be prepared for eye injuries, trying to be prepared for the potential overload of communication cell towers, so we’re planning and preparing back up means of communication,” said Moran.

Officials are asking that employers allow their employees to work from home on the day of the eclipse and for schools to have e-learning days to minimize the amount of commuters on the road.