With only two days left before the big event, a Cairns supplier of solar eclipse glasses is stocking up on his wares as he sees business to go pleasantly haywire on Wednesday.
Nic Zymaras said in the www.cairns.com.au that his first shipment order last April had ran out, and that he needs to stock up a further 30,000 pairs for sale on the day of the big event alone.
The glasses that he's selling were from by US manufacturer Rainbow Symphony and were were approved for use by the University of New South Wales' School of Optometry and Vision Science after a rigorous testing process. Symphony also produces filters for telescopes.
Mr Zymaras also belied warnings issued by health professionals, including the Australia Society of Opthalmologists on the dangers of looking at the directly sun, even with solar eclipse glasses on.
"There is no Australian standard for solar filter spectacles. My advice is that there are serious risks in direct viewing of the sun at any time, including during an eclipse, and it's simply not worth the risk," Dr Rowan Porter, Brisbane-based retina specialist and society spokesman, was quoted by The Australian over the weekend.
Melissa Hay, Optometrist and Director of Visique, however, said the glasses are still operable provided they contain the proper filters.
"You should never look at the sun without the correct filters. This is really important during a solar eclipse, the sun might be disappearing but you'll still be able to see its powerful rays - standard sunglasses simply won't cut the mustard," Ms Hay was quoted by Voxy News.
Eye conditions such as cataracts or pterygiums and eye diseases such as Macular Degeneration can result from over exposure to these celestial events. All have a lasting and damaging effect on one's vision.
"They've been making them for 13 years and they've never had an issue,'' Mr Zymaras said of the glasses he is selling, noting the State Government's Office of Fair Trading have approved the solar eclipse glasses, as well as supported by the Advance Cairns solar eclipse taskforce.