Hopkinsville talks about solar eclipse safety concerns - WSMV News 4

Hopkinsville talks about solar eclipse safety concerns

Posted: Updated: Jun 08, 2017 07:11 PM
(WSMV file photo) (WSMV file photo)

The countdown is on and Hopkinsville is getting ready for this year’s total eclipse.

They've got tumblers, t-shirts, blankets, pens, even total eclipse moon shine.

What they may not be prepared for are the numbers.

Initially Hopkinsville officials anticipated 50,000 people coming to town. Then an astronomer with the American Astronomical Society recently told them they should probably go ahead and double that.

"If you think about the size of Hopkinsville, it's 32,000 residents within city limits, and Christian County is 70,000. So if every resident that lives here has one person stay at their house, we're essentially going double our population," said Brook Jung, Hopkinsville's solar eclipse marketing and event consultant.

Officials are now calling for extra security. They're working closely with Homeland Security and the FBI.

"We're also making a declaration to the governor to hopefully get some National Guard assistance. We'll find out soon if that request has gone through,” Jung said.

Then there's traffic, transportation, cell service issues and hotel rooms. There won’t be enough beds to accommodate the crowds so they're converting fields into campgrounds, bringing in showers and bathrooms.

"You know, people are going to need to use those throughout the day so we currently have hundreds and hundreds of porta-potties that will be spread throughout the community," Jung said.

Another concern is the temperature. August can be dangerously hot.

"Making sure we have cooling tents and first aid stations available, making sure all of our EMS folks are prepared for any situation that might arise," Jung said.  

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