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Benton County dispatch prepares for the solar eclipse emergencies

(KMTR image)

CORVALLIS Ore.- The total solar eclipse is just over a month away, and around 400,000 people are expected to be in Benton County during the August 21 event.

Emergency responders are already preparing for increased emergency calls.

Benton County Dispatch will add an additional six lines of coverage for that weekend.

Benton County Sheriff's Emergency Manager Kevin Higgins said they would rather be over prepared than under prepared, but he urges people to only call with an emergency.

"Being able to get to the emergency calls is going to be key. Historically, there's been a lot of calls for non-emergency; they call 9-1-1...really, it's improper use 9-1-1," said Higgins.

All Benton County emergency responders have been planning over the past year for the big event.

For more information on safety during the eclipse, go to the sheriff's office or the Visit Corvallis website.

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