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The End of Daylight Savings Time and Its Impact on Accidents

The end of daylight savings time results in some benefits (like an extra hour of time), but we also face some drawbacks. It will get dark earlier and earlier, and that could have an impact on traffic accidents: vehicle on vehicle, vehicle upon pedestrian, and bicycle upon both vehicles and pedestrians. Around 40% of vehicle accidents happen while its dark, either from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. or the 4 a.m. to 8 a.m. span, whether the clock is in daylight savings time or not. Although expert opinion is divided on whether traffic accidents spike in the immediate period after daylight savings time ends, it is reasonable to assume that more dark is going to equal more accidents. Indeed, U.S. News Health reported that instituting daylight savings time all year might prevent 195 motor-vehicle fatalities and 171 pedestrian traffic-related deaths annually.

Given these statistics, what can drivers do to avoid accidents after daylight saving time ends? Attention to basic safety rules helps. First, make sure that all your lights work properly. Make sure you use them after dark—your beams should go on at a reasonable time to be seen by drivers and pedestrians. Make sure you take your sunglasses off—it is common for drivers to forget them, especially if they use clip-ons.

Drive defensively: make sure that you are not impeding the vision of oncoming drivers by using your high beams as they approach. Also, do not focus solely on the center line or the road directly ahead of you. That can inhibit the adjustment that your eyes make to the dark, so you may not see pedestrians or bicyclists who come out of the dark. As you drive, look occasionally side to side as well.

Want to discuss a traffic accident? Contact us at 844-Take-MyCase and www.844TakeMyCase.com.


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