Amazon is refunding purchases of unverifiable eclipse eyewear

Amazon is issuing refunds for those who’ve purchased possibly
fake solar eclipse glasses on the site in anticipation of this
summer’s big solar eclipse event.

A lot of folks have been gearing up for the event that will —
depending on where you are — either totally block out the sun
or partially block it as the eclipse moves across the North
American hemisphere on August 21st. Many of these same people
have turned to the ease of Amazon for ordering the protective
eyewear needed to look directly up at the sky while the solar
phenomenon passes overhead.

However, Amazon has not been able to verify all of the glasses
on its site have come from reputable manufacturers and, as
first reported in the Verge, has now sent out a safety warning,
telling customers not to use the questionable eyewear. We’ve
reached out to Amazon for comment.

Reports of safety issues have been going on for a couple of
months. One woman whom Amazon recently refunded, bought 500
eclipse glasses in bulk on the site from a Chinese manufacturer who told her they were
safe. It was only later she learned the manufacturer had
purposely misled her with a fake safety labeling.

It goes without saying, but improper eyewear could seriously
damage the vision of those looking directly into the eclipse.
“Homemade filters or ordinary sunglasses, even very dark ones,
are not safe for looking at the Sun; they
transmit thousands of times too much
sunlight,” warns the American Astronomical Society (AAS).

Amazon has reportedly been shutting down shops offering
unverifiable eclipse eyewear and issuing notifications not to
use them in case they cause eye damage but it may be a little
too late for some who don’t get the warning in time. We’re also
right up to the edge of purchasing the proper glasses from the
site in time for the eclipse for those without Prime.

Of course, there’s still a wide selection available to choose from on
the site if you are looking to get a pair. But, look for a mark
on the glasses with the ISO 12312-2 international safety
standard before purchasing. These glasses are verified to block
out all but 1/100,000th of the Sun’s light and can protect your
eyes from harmful radiation while you enjoy the event.

Also keep in mind NASA and the AAS only recognize a short list
of brands that meet the proper safety standards.
Check out the full list of approved manufacturers here before buying online.

Featured Image: Daniel MacDonald /

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