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Car Accident and Daylight Saving Time

Old clock on autumn leaves on wooden table on natural backgroundYou will notice something a bit different this week. Look out your window between 4 and 5 p.m. and you will see that the sky has gone dark. We can thank Daylight Saving Time for an extra hour of darkness, but we may be able to attribute it to something else: a rise in car accidents.

According to history, daylight savings time was created as a way to save energy in the Spring. Springing forward and falling back an hour was utilized in World Wars I and II and adopted as a standard across the nation in 1966. States have the option of not participating in daylight savings time, but only two states in the nation, Arizona and Hawaii, have chosen to leave the clocks alone.

Studies have shown that it can take people up to a week to adjust to the addition or loss of an hour in their day. This, in turn, can make people sleepy, irritable and less aware. Those things all equate to at least a slight decrease in driving ability. The problem seems to be worse when we spring ahead, but the week following both adjustments sees a heightened number of collisions.

Staying safe is not a tough thing to do. Go to bed early when the time changes. If your normal bedtime has been 9 p.m. up until this week, go to bed at 8, then 8:15, then 8:30, etc. until you are in bed at 9 next week. Get up at the same time you would have, gradually increasing your wake time by 15 minutes until you are getting up at a time that matches what the clock says. Pay extra attention to the vehicles surrounding you on the roadway, and give your own driving a bit more care.

If you are involved in a car accident in Pensacola, you have legal options. Call our office today to schedule a free case evaluation.

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