Solar eclipse to impact region in one week

AUG. 14, 11:30 A.M. – The first cross-country solar eclipse since the advent of the automobile and creation of the free interstate system will be visible throughout much of the country next Monday, Aug. 21. In the Richmond region, most people will experience about 85 percent obstruction of sunlight when the moon passes between the Earth and the sun.

The event will begin at 1:18 p.m. local time and conclude at 4:03 p.m. During that time, looking at the sun without specially designed protective glasses could result in significant eye damage or even blindness.

All Henrico libraries will offer safety glasses while supplies last, and several libraries – Glen Allen, Libbie Mill, North Park, Twin Hickory and Varina – will host eclipse parties from 2 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. Aug. 21.

NASA maintains a list of reputable dealers of eclipse safety glasses here: https://eclipse.aas.org/resources/solar-filters. Among them: 7-Eleven, Kroger, Lowe's and Walmart.

According to NASA, the following materials should never be used to view a solar eclipse:

• sunglasses of any kind
• color film
• medical X-ray film
• smoked glass
• floppy disks

Similarly, do not look at the sun through a camera, a telescope, binoculars, or any other optical device while using your eclipse glasses or hand-held solar viewer — the concentrated solar rays will damage the filter and enter your eyes, causing serious injury, according to NASA.

The sun’s UV radiation can burn the retinas in the eyes leading to permanent damage or even blindness. This can occur even if your eyes are exposed to direct sunlight for just a few seconds.

While our region won't experience complete darkness, the eclipse will create a visible difference, and that's something that AAA Mid-Atlantic is urging drivers to anticipate in advance because it could result in distracted driving issues.

“As spectacular as this once-in-a-lifetime event will be, if you happen to catch a glimpse of it while behind the wheel, do not turn your eyes away from the road,” said Tammy Arnette, Senior Public Affairs Specialist for AAA. “Aside from damaging your eyes, looking at the eclipse while driving is distracted driving at its worst. While AAA recommends staying off the road during the eclipse, if you have to drive keep sun visors and cell phones down to protect your eyes, reduce temptation to look at the sun, and avoid distracted driving.”

You should not wear eclipse glasses while driving. Officials also are urging drivers who are on the road during the eclipse not to pull over to the side of the road to view it or take photos. Drivers also should be especially careful of pedestrians who may be preoccupied attempting to view the eclipse.
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Thoracic surgeon is first to perform 100 robot-assisted lobectomies in Central Virginia


Graham M. Bundy, a thoracic surgeon with HCA Virginia Physicians’ Cardiothoracic Surgical Associates, is the first such surgeon in Central Virginia to perform 100 minimally-invasive Da Vinci robot-assisted lobectomies (a surgical procedure to remove a lobe of the lung). The procedure is used to treat multiple types of conditions but is most often used to treat lung cancer. > Read more.

UMFS has urgent need for foster parents


UMFS officials say they have a desperate need for more foster families in the Richmond region and Central Virginia, especially those who would receive teenagers currently in the foster care system.

In recent years throughout the state, the number of children entering the foster care system has grown. > Read more.

VSP issues warning about automated traffic ticket email scam

Virginia State Police officials are warning Virginians about an email scam that tells people they are receiving an “automated traffic ticket” from the agency. State Police do not use or issue digital or automated traffic tickets or summonses, however. Anyone receiving such an email should delete it and not click on any links provided in the email, police said. > Read more.

READ Center offers free classes, training to low-literate people


One in six adults in Metro Richmond has literacy issues, and the READ Center in Henrico County is working to address the issue.

Next week – Sept. 24-30 – is Adult Education and Family Literacy Week, a time during which the READ Center is shining a light on its efforts to help some of the 35,000 adults in the region for whom reading, writing and basic math remain an elusive target. > Read more.

Play Day RVA planned for Sept. 21


The Richmond region will celebrate Play Day RVA Thursday, Sept. 21, with activities throughout the area to celebrate the opportunities that exist to play in the community. Dozens of employers, local governments, schools and community organizations will participate by hosting events that integrate playful activities into daily life and spread awareness of the value of active living. > Read more.

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September 2017
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Libbie Mill Library will host Nerd Night from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. Nerd Night is a quarterly discussion group for everyone from super fans to the uninitiated enthusiast. The group will talk about anime and manga, science fiction, fantasy, comic books and cartoons with a different topic at each meeting. Today’s topic is “Interplanetary Inspiration: Making the world a better place through Science Fiction.” For ages 18+. For details, call 501-1940 or visit http://www.henricolibrary.org. Full text

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