SC couple starts class action lawsuit against Amazon over eclipse glasses

A couple from SC have launched a class-action lawsuit against online retailer Amazon for selling defective eclipse-viewing glasses, which they say have resulted in permanent damage to their vision.

In court papers filed in federal court this week, Thomas Corey Payne and Kayla Harris of Charleston said they began experiencing the symptoms after viewing the total solar eclipse August 21 using glasses purchased on Amazon.

The suit also claims the glasses in question were "unfit for the goal for which they were advertised and sold" and "extremely risky and/or defective".

In the lawsuit, the couple claims, the glasses were defective and that Amazon was negligent in allowing them to be sold.

Amazon defended itself stating that it began to email customers to issue a recall of the potentially unsafe glasses on August 10. But Amazon failed to disclose either the scale of the recall or a public list of affected vendors, the suit says.

Amazon issued a recall for protective glasses that found to be without the required safety standard number ISO 12312-2. The lawsuit claims the 3-pack of glasses Corey purchased from the online retailer impaired the couple's vision when they used it to watch the eclipse.

However, later that day, Payne and Harris said they experienced headaches and eye watering.

Over the following days, they then developed vision impairment including blurriness and distorted vision.

The pair want Amazon to pay for the medical cost of monitoring peoples' eyes to see how much damage, if any, has occurred.

The American Astronomical Society and NASA had also warned consumers to test their glasses before using them to view the eclipse. The company claims that it was not able to verify whether the glasses were made by reputable companies.

Payne and Harris said they did not receive notice of the recall.

The lawsuit argues that potential class members include anyone across the country who bought eclipse glasses via Amazon that were "unfit for the goal for which they were sold, were extremely risky and/or defective" and caused users similar injuries, including "ranging from temporary discomfort to permanent blindness".

Vanessa Coleman