At Springer & Lyle, we are aware of the danger lurking around the six days following the day we “spring forward” an hour. Numerous studies have shown that this is a time that car accidents increase when 48 out of the 50 states go on daylight savings time.
Effect of Losing One Hour of Sleep
Moving the clock ahead in the spring deprives folks of one hour of sleep. This does not seem like much, but according to researchers, this loss “causes a significant disruption in sleep cycles.” When sleep cycles are interrupted, then people are drowsy.
Drowsy driving can be as dangerous as distracted or impaired driving. Some police departments report they see an increase of as much as 10 percent in car accidents in the first week after the time change.
Boulder Colorado Study: Moving the Clocks Forward for Daylight Savings Time Causes Impaired Driving
In 2014, researchers at the University of Colorado Boulder conducted a study of the effects of the one-hour loss of sleep on driving ability and fatal car accidents. The study found the problems are:
- Shifting ambient light.
- Sleep deprivation.
It takes drivers almost an entire week to adjust to driving in the darker morning hours. During this time, they are also less alert due to the one-hour loss of sleep.
The study looked at data over a 10-year period of time and concluded that there was a 6.3 percent increase in fatal car accidents during the six days following the spring forward time change. This came to 302 traffic fatalities during that time period, which is a little more than three a year.
“Only” three more fatal crashes may not seem like that many, but this means three deaths that might could have been prevented. And, the number of serious and life-changing injuries were not counted.
Contact Us for Help
If you or someone you know was injured or killed during the six days following daylight savings time, or at any other time of the year, you may have a claim for damages.
The personal injury attorneys at Springer & Lyle can help you evaluate the case and obtain the compensation you are justly entitled for your injuries, lost wages, medical expenses, pain and suffering, and other physical damage. Contact us at 940-387-0404 for a free consultation.