March 21, 2024

New York State Police Troop E prepare for the total solar eclipse

New York State Police Troop E prepare for the total solar eclipse
Press Release

The New York State Police, in close collaboration with other state, local, and federal law enforcement, emergency services, and transportation agencies, has meticulously developed an emergency operation plan. Our unwavering goal is to provide a comprehensive and uniform presence, ensuring the safety of both visitors and residents as they experience and travel home from the eclipse. Members of the State Police will implement security measures appropriate for large gatherings and take all necessary actions to maintain order and smooth traffic flow.

Building on past experiences, the planning process for this event has been proactive, aiming to address potential impacts within Troop E. Our goal is to minimize any adverse effects associated with the large influx of visitors to the local area. This approach is based on the lessons learned from the 2017 solar eclipse, where some regions experienced a 100 percent increase in their population in the days leading up to and during the eclipse.

Troop E Headquarters will operate as the command post for all State Police operations, with forward operating bases established at SP Zone Headquarters located in Rochester, Auburn, and Bath. Emergency Operations Centers (EOC) will also be located in every county, with State Police representatives there. The State Police plan to increase the number of available personnel during the event. Strike Teams will be strategically deployed to monitor traffic and respond rapidly to any issues that may interfere with the safe flow of traffic or affect the quick clearance of any incidents. The State Police will have additional aviation assets on hand to monitor traffic and perform rescue operations if needed. We will also have Marine, ATV/UTV, Commercial Vehicle Enforcement, Motorcycles, and UAS assets strategically located if needed.

Concerns for the area due to the influx of population:

- Potential for transportation system disruptions and/or impacts.

- Potential for delayed/disrupted emergency service responses and prolonged response times.

- Potential for stranded motorists.

- Out of the area visitors and potential weather/road concerns.

- Fuel infrastructure may not be able to support an increase in vehicular traffic.

- Gridlocked traffic may increase fuel, food, and water demand depending on duration.

- Cellular networks may be overloaded by high volume.

- Increase in 911 call volume.

- Do NOT park or stop in the roadway. If you wish to stop, find a safe location that does not interfere with traffic. 


The New York State Police make the following recommendations based on expectations:

- Plan on staying in the region the night of the event.

- If you can’t stay, fuel/charge up the day before the event.

- Have extra food and water in your vehicle for your trip; shop the day before.

- Local residents should avoid the roadways after the event.

- Have cellphones charged and bring chargers with you.

- Schools are recommended to have the day off or a half-day.

- Plan on being in traffic for an extended period.

- Plan on viewing the event from designated viewing sites.

- If you are going to view the eclipse, ensure you use the appropriate approved glasses.

- If from out of the area, don’t use vehicles that can’t travel for ten-plus hours without charging – stranded EVs in traffic will be towed.