Northumberland County urges residents to prioritize safety during the upcoming solar eclipse

Cobourg, ON – April 3, 2024 – With the solar eclipse event on the horizon, Northumberland County is reminding residents to prioritize safety while preparing to witness this rare celestial event. The solar eclipse on April 8th promises to be an unforgettable experience for our community. However, it is essential to take necessary precautions to ensure the safety and well-being of all residents.

"While we are excited to witness this rare event, our top priority is the safety of residents,” states Warden Brian Ostrander. “We are anticipating a large influx of visitors to our community, so we urge everyone to take the necessary precautions and follow safety guidelines to ensure a safe and enjoyable experience.”

As a precaution, Northumberland County is taking steps to enhance emergency readiness, including increasing paramedic staffing and having roads crews on standby that day. To ensure the safety of residents during the eclipse event, the County is also adjusting operations where services cannot safely be delivered in the dark.

Temporary Closure of Community Recycling Centres:

Community Recycling Centres (CRCs) located in Bewdley, Seymour, and Brighton will be closing early on April 8th at 1 p.m. and will remain closed for the remainder of the day. This decision is being made as CRCs are not designed to operate in the dark, with limited on-site lighting. Regular operating hours will resume the following day, ensuring minimal disruption to waste and recycling services.

Closure of Northumberland County Forest:

To help protect the safety of forest users, the Northumberland County Forest will be closed from 12 p.m. on Sunday, April 7th, until the morning of Tuesday, April 9th. This temporary closure aims to ensure the well-being of visitors and pets during the eclipse event, including avoiding any potential safety hazards from active nocturnal wildlife.

Additional Measures:

  • County roads crews will be on standby to respond to any road issues or closures.
  • The Golden Plough Long-term Care home will have additional support on the day shift as a precautionary measure to mitigate any potential staffing challenges later in the day.
  • The Northumberland County Archives and Museum (NCAM) will be closed on April 8th.
  • The County is prepared to activate its Emergency Operations Centre (EOC) as required.

Safety Precautions for Residents

Residents are encouraged to take the following safety precautions during the solar eclipse event:

  • Never look at the sun without eye protection. Only use certified safety glasses to protect your eyes when viewing the eclipse.
  • Given the anticipated influx of visitors to the community, stock up well ahead of time on essential supplies and fuel.
  • Plan your eclipse viewing location, arrive early, and avoid unnecessary travel during the event.
  • Ensure your emergency kit is up-to-date and easily accessible.
  • It’s recommended to keep small children and pets indoors.
  • Follow any additional safety guidelines provided by local authorities and health officials.

The County continues to monitor the weather and event activities for April 8th and is in close communication with partner municipalities and Emergency Management Ontario. 

For more information and updates on the solar eclipse event and temporary closures, residents are encouraged to visit