New tech allows for more people to enjoy spectacular views at state parks

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) — As fall colors come to life across Middle Tennessee, a new viewfinder at Radnor Lake State Park is making it easier for those with colorblind deficiencies to see these vibrant hues.

“Our department had teamed back in 2017 with EnChroma to create something so that those folks that have colorblind deficiencies would be able to see Tennessee’s amazing fall colors,” says Mark Ezell, the Commissioner of the Tennessee Department of Tourist Development.

Ezell tells sister station News 2 that many Middle Tennesseans will benefit from these viewfinders.

“One out of eight men and one out of 200 women, or 13 million Americans have colorblind deficiencies, especially in that red-green area. And so this viewfinder can help them distinguish not only in distinguish those colors, but also see those more vibrant colors that Tennessee is known for.”

Erik Ritchie, the CEO of EnChroma, tells sister station News 2 that the technology in these viewfinders allows those with color deficient vision to see more.

“If there are two kind of color areas for a normal person, these areas for a colorblind person are essentially overlapping. And what our technology does, that brings apart the signals again, so they could start to see more distinct colors.”

The viewfinders work for most people who have color vision deficiency, but not all. People with very mild color deficiencies may not notice much of a change when they look through these spectral lenses.

Ritchie says, “About 20% of the people it’s not going to work for. For the remaining 80%, it really works for about 20 to 30% of those folks. They have kind of what we call that ‘oh my god moment.'”

The viewfinder at Radnor Lake State Park is also the first to be ADA accessible.

This is the 13th viewfinder with EnChroma technology in Tennessee. A complete list of these viewfinders can be found at this link.

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