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Metro Public Health Department, Tennessee Museum store say their eclipse glasses not safe

The Metro Public Health Department says 500 pairs of eclipse safety glasses given away to the public are not safe to use. PHOTO: MGN

NASHVILLE, Tenn.--The Metro Public Health Department says 500 pairs of eclipse safety glasses given away to the public are not safe to use.

In a statement released Tuesday, the department says the eclipse glasses were given away two weeks ago at the Lentz Health Center and don't provide the appropriate level of protection to view the upcoming eclipse.

The Health Department ordered the glasses from a vendor, which gave the department a document stating the ISO 12312-1 glasses "passed" for viewing. However, MPHD says according the the International Organization for Standardization, only glasses with ISO 12312-2 are safe.

"We want to do the right thing," Spokesperson Brian Todd said. "We want to do what we feel is safe. The decision was made. We won't use these glasses, and we want people to know not to use the glasses if they picked them up at the health center."

In addition, glasses sold at the Tennessee Museum store have been recalled by Amazon.

"We felt bad about it, that we had to recall them, and we were just so glad that we were able to find glasses to replace them," said Tennessee State Museum Director of Public Programs Paulette Fox. "I think it would have been really bad to tell people, 'hey, we're going to refund the money and you have to find new glasses a week before the eclipse.'"

The museum said those who purchased a pair can return them for a replacement.

The new glasses will be available starting Wednesday at 10 a.m. when the store opens. Consumers can also call 615-741-2692.

Meanwhile the Metro Public Health Department is still trying to get its money back from the vendor. It's also trying to get replacement glasses so the 500 people who took advantage of the giveaway can have safe glasses to use.

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