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Buyer beware: Amazon refunds customers who bought knock-off solar eclipse glasses

ABOVE: Amazon is offering a refund to customers who bought counterfeit eclipse glasses to watch the solar eclipse next week. The retail giant says the glasses may not come from a recommended manufacturer.

As the demand for solar eclipse glasses continues to spike, Amazon is issuing refunds for customers who may have bought fake protective wear.

On Aug. 21, people will be flocking to parts of the United States to watch as the sun disappears behind the moon. The rare solar eclipse will span from South Carolina to Oregon and last up to three hours, according to NASA.

READ MORE: Solar eclipse 2017: How to watch without permanently damaging your eyes

Many people have bought protective eyewear on Amazon, as you need the glasses in order to look directly up at the sky while the eclipse happens (or else you can permanently damage your eyes). However, Amazon has not been able to verify all of the glasses comply with industry standards and are from reputable sources. The company issued some customers refunds last week.

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“Out of an abundance of caution and in the interests of our customers, we asked third-party sellers that were offering solar eclipse glasses to provide documentation to verify their products were compliant with relevant safety standards,” an Amazon spokesperson told Global News.

“The offers from sellers who provided this safety documentation remain available to customers. The listings from sellers who did not provide the appropriate documentation have been removed and customers who purchased from them were notified last week. Customers can contact Amazon customer service with any questions or concerns.”

WATCH: Influx of eclipse-related tourism turning into a boon for many small American towns

Influx of eclipse-related tourism turning into a boon for many small American towns
Influx of eclipse-related tourism turning into a boon for many small American towns

Amazon didn’t say how many glasses were recalled.

What glasses should you buy?

If you’re still looking for some protective eyewear (or need to replace yours), the American Astronomical Society has a list of reputable vendors of solar eclipse glasses.

According to NASA, the eye gear must have certification, with a “designated ISO 12312-2 international standard.” The company who created the product and its contact information should be clearly printed on the glasses.

READ MORE: What Canadians can expect during the solar eclipse on August 21

Certified eclipse glasses make sure no more than 0.00032 per cent of sunlight is transmitted to the eyes, according to Space.com. Regular sunglasses only protect the eyes from a fraction of sunlight and are made of different material.

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With files from Global News reporter Maham Abedi

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