With the eclipse just around the corner, things are going to start getting hectic very soon. Estimates of the number of people who will be travelling to Rexburg to see the eclipse range from the thousands to the tens of thousands. While no one is sure exactly what kind of influx to expect, one thing is sure – things are going to be at least a little more crazy than normal. Half of the craze comes simply from being unsure of what to expect. With such broad estimates, who knows what Rexburg will really look like the day of the eclipse, and the days that surround the event. While many of the worst-case scenarios shouldn’t be something you over-stress, there are definitely things that you should do to make sure you’ll be prepared. We’re not proclaiming doom and gloom. The eclipse will most likely come and go without too much complication. However, to help you be ready, we’ve compiled five of some of the most important things you should do to prepare yourself and your family for The Great American Eclipse.
With such a large number of people coming to the area, you’re definitely going to want to avoid any trips to grocery stores in the days that closely surround the eclipse. Some stores may choose not to open at all on the day of the eclipse, while others will likely be packed and experiencing shortages. For all we know, some may choose to raise their prices to take advantage of the increase in demand. To avoid letting this have a negative effect on you and your family, make sure you have several gallons of water tucked away. Be sure to have enough food in your pantry for a week’s worth of meals. Make sure you have both your prescription medications and simple medications as well (ibuprofen, Tylenol, cough drops, etc.) Doing so will keep you from needing to shop during the days surrounding the eclipse.
Rexburg is a pretty trusting area. I know many people who choose to rarely lock their doors. Don’t make that mistake during the eclipse. Be sure to lock your doors, windows, cars, and garage during eclipse-time. With so many people coming to the area, there are bound to be some troublemakers in the group. Don’t make your home an easy target.
Experts have expressed concern over the burden a large influx of people will have on the supply of fuel in the area. Be sure that all your vehicles have a full tank of gas a half week or so before the eclipse, and you won’t have to worry about not being able to fill up later.
While many of the possible negative scenarios that have been proposed are either unlikely or completely bogus, there are some things that you can expect with surety. One negative scenario that you can expect with certainty is that you probably won’t have cell coverage. Experts have pointed out that towers are already limited during peak use times on any normal day in the Rexburg area, and so it’s very likely that with such a large number of people coming to the area the towers simply won’t be able to handle it. That means no calls, and no data connection. As you prepare for the eclipse, it will be important for you to know where the nearest landline is in case of an emergency. In fact, if you’ve got one collecting dust in a box somewhere, you can plug it in and reach 911 without a phone carrier. If you don’t, find out if you have a neighbor or relative close by who does who would be willing to let you use it if need be.
Above all, simply be sure to have a detailed plan for whatever you may be doing during the eclipse. Have printed directions if you plan on travelling anywhere, as you likely won’t be able to use your phone as a GPS. Make sure friends and family coming to the area do the same. Also, make sure you plan on leaving plenty early no matter where you’re going, as traffic will most likely be a nightmare. If you’re meeting with friends or family, make sure you have meeting times set, and backup plans as well. Have an emergency plan. Finally, plan to have fun. As long as you’ve done a good job of preparing, the eclipse will be an awesome, once-in-a-lifetime event for you, your family, and your friends. Enjoy it!