BY NICOLAS CORTES
A total eclipse of the sun was witnessed in most of Chile this morning, gathering people from all over the world, even with the difficulty of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The whole eclipse was witnessed from 13:02:44 in the city of Temuco, which is located in the south-central part of the country. The eclipse produced total darkness in the surroundings of Temuco. However, the solar eclipse could be seen all over the country at different percentages but was seen the most in the central and south zones of Chile.
The Chilean government has promoted a campaign called “Live a Responsible Eclipse.” The campaign combines two main factors of concern for the authorities—the possible damage to the Chilean population’s eyesight and, the COVID-19 pandemic. The government’s calls were to take this event with responsibility, use special lenses that have a filter that blocks the harmful rays of the sun, and thus avoid damage to the retinas of the population.
At the same time, measures were taken all over the country to avoid crowds and massive movement of people to the places where the eclipse was best witnessed; all this to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in the country.
“This December 14, it is not necessary to move because of the eclipse we can see from our own homes. Therefore, let’s be responsible with self-care, let’s not generate agglomerations, let’s maintain social distance and that way we can enjoy the solar eclipse healthily,” Katia Guzman, Governor of Malleco, said.
The eclipse had a significant impact on the population because it is a unique and spectacular event to witness.
“Having the opportunity to witness this solar eclipse almost in its entirety, since I live in Santiago and it was witnessed in 78%, was incredible,” Claudia Santos, a citizen of the city of Santiago de Chile, said.
“It is impossible not to think about how small we are and the immensity of what is in space. It was a great moment, which I hope to have the opportunity to repeat sometime more in my life.”