Kentucky businesses urged to prepare for influx of solar eclipse visitors
The August 21st eclipse is expected to impact deliveries of food and fuel.
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Thousands and thousands of tourists and visitors are expected to be in Kentucky for the August 21 total solar eclipse.
Hopkinsville is among the top eclipse viewing sites in the country, when the eclipse sweeps across ten Kentucky counties and 14 states. And that's why Kentucky transportation officials are telling people in that area and beyond to treat the event like a snow storm.
With two months until the Great American Eclipse, state and local agencies are telling businesses to prepare for traffic issues that could impact routine food and fuel deliveries.
In a Facebook post, the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet's District 1 chief engineer Mike McGregor says the time to plan is now. "With NASA predicting between 100,000 and 500,000 visitors to the region for the eclipse, we're urging businesses to think through some of the supply challenges that may be created by heavy traffic and several days of high demand for food, fuel and grocery supplies."
The Transportation Cabinet says businesses need to think about how heavy traffic will impact employees getting to work. There is also the potential for long lines at the gas pumps, and vendors may have trouble delivering critical food, groceries, fuel and other supplies because of traffic.
Some restaurants near Hopkinsville are taking note. Many plan to order extra food supplies and rent refrigerated trailers. Businesses are also being encouraged to consider early and overnight deliveries of supplies. And they should consider flex schedules to avoid travel issues.
Visitors headed to Hopkinsville or any of the viewing locations in Kentucky are also being told to have a full tank of gas and to prepare for traffic congestion.
Transportation engineers are already training Hopkinsville police to operate traffic signal controllers manually, so officers don't have to stand in the middle of intersections to direct traffic.
The eclipse in Kentucky is expected to last from about 12 noon to about 3 p.m. CDT with totality of just over 2.5 minutes along the main path.
To remain informed about eclipse-related traffic and travel information in Kentucky, connect with KYTC on Facebook.
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