Charleston city leaders reveal eclipse plans

CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - City of Charleston officials are updating their plans to prepare for Monday's total eclipse.

Mayor John Tecklenburg held a news conference Wednesday at 12:30 p.m.

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First responders were also on hand to speak about their plans to keep everyone safe.

Extra police officers, paramedics and state troopers will be on duty Monday to handle a greater number of tourists who are expected to be in Charleston for the rare event.

Mayor Tecklenburg emphasized that people need to be wearing eclipse glasses if they are looking at the sun. He says the Charleston Area Convention and Visitor's Bureau currently has some.

Public safety officials say you can expect extra traffic because of the eclipse.

"This is an exciting event for Charleston, we are expecting a lot of visitors, all of the hotels rooms in the whole tri-county region are booked close to 100 percent," Tecklenburg said."We think a lot of other folks will be driving in so safety remains our number priority."

The director of emergency management, Mark Wilbert, says the day of the eclipse will be a very busy and challenging traffic day.

The city is planning for the influx of visitors to begin over the weekend leading into the day of the eclipse.

Charleston's emergency operation center will be open at 8 a.m. on the day of the eclipse and will remain open throughout the day.

Parks and recreation facilities will be open, some administrative offices in downtown Charleston will be closed.

Wilbert says there will be extra comfort facilities at fifteen parks that will include extra trash cans and porta potties.

Some of these comfort facilities downtown will be at Gadsdenboro Park and Marion Square. These two parks will also include cooling tents, extra medical personnel and water.

Parking garages will remain open, however no one will be allowed to gather at the top of the parking deck.

The pedestrian walkway on the Ravenel Bridge will be closed from noon to 4 p.m. the day of the eclipse.

Emergency officials also want to remind you to drink water because it will be hot and to wear sunscreen.

"Our message is bring water wherever you're going and drink lots of water throughout the day, hydrate, hydrate, hyrdate." Wilbert said.

You can also expect cellphone disruption due to the amount of people who will be in the area.

Next weekend is also a king tide weekend, so emergency officials say their could be a disruption with flooding.

You can get eclipse information from the City of Charleston by clicking here.

There will also be a citizen's information line open on Monday for eclipse related questions that you can call at 843-973-7219.

The Charleston Fire Department will have a boat on the water, it is expecting a huge increase in boating traffic on eclipse day.

Carriage horse tours and tour buses will not be allowed to operate on the day of the eclipse due to traffic concerns.

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