End of Daylight Saving Causes Spike in Car AccidentsOctober 29, 2018
People across the country will gain an hour of sleep on Sunday November 4, 2018 as daylight saving time comes to an end. With the hour of sleep gained, Americans also lose an hour of daylight. Historically, Benjamin Franklin started the tradition of the spring and fall clock changes as a way to conserve energy. Today, we continue to “spring ahead” and “fall back” each year, even though the fact that it is cold and dark outside by 5:00 is unappealing to many people. Unfortunately, the shorter days can also increase the risk of car accidents, since traffic accidents are more likely to occur at night. Many of these accidents can be avoided by following the rules of the road and using extra caution when driving in the dark.
According to the National Safety Council (NSC), drivers are three times more likely to be involved in a fatal car accident at night, compared to during the daylight hours. There are a number of factors that contribute to this statistic, including decreased depth perception and peripheral vision, as well as slower reaction times. In addition, when it gets darker earlier, it can lead to drowsy driving. The sudden loss of daylight can take some getting used to, as our internal clock adjusts to the shorter days.
In an effort to raise awareness of the risks of drowsy driving, particularly following the end of daylight saving time, the National Sleep Foundation established Drowsy Driving Prevention Week, which begins as daylight savings ends. This annual campaign brings much-needed attention to the issue of drowsy driving and how it can be just as dangerous as driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
Safety Tips for Avoiding Drowsy Driving
There are some simple, effective things you can do to avoid being seriously injured, or killed in a drowsy driving car accident, including the following:
- Make sure your car is prepped for nighttime driving. It is important to check the lights in your car, including headlights, tail lights, brake lights, and signal lights. Make sure they are clean and functioning properly so that you can see other cars on the road, and they can see you.
- Use you low beam and high beams appropriately. Low beams should be used when you need to see approximately 250 feet in front of you. High beams are necessary to see 350 to 500 feet in front of you. Always turn your high beams down when another vehicle is approaching from the other direction.
- Look out for animals. Many animals, like deer, racoons, and opossums are more active at night. The majority of deer-related car accidents occur in November, so use extra caution during this time, particularly at night.
- Get enough sleep. This is a simple, yet important tip that all drivers should keep in mind. Being well-rested will help you to remain alert, and able to react quickly to an unexpected traffic hazard.
Baltimore Car Accident Lawyers at LeViness, Tolzman & Hamilton Advocate for All Car Accident Victims
If you have been injured in a drowsy driving-related car accident, do not hesitate to contact the Baltimore car accident lawyers at LeViness, Tolzman & Hamilton. We are on your side and will work tirelessly to ensure that you receive the maximum financial compensation you deserve for your injuries. Our dedicated and experienced legal team will protect your rights and walk you through every step of the legal process. To schedule a free consultation, call us today at 800-547-4LAW (4529) or contact us online.
Our offices are located in Baltimore, Columbia, Glen Burnie, and Towson, allowing us to represent car accident victims in Maryland, including those in Anne Arundel County, Baltimore County, Carroll County, Harford County, Howard County, Montgomery County, Maryland’s Western Counties, Prince George’s County, Queen Anne’s County, Southern Maryland, and the Eastern Shore, as well as the communities of Catonsville, Essex, Halethorpe, Middle River, Rosedale, Gwynn Oak, Brooklandville, Dundalk, Pikesville, Nottingham, Windsor Mill, Lutherville, Timonium, Sparrows Point, Ridgewood, and Elkridge.