In New York, Pennsylvania and across the nation, moving the clocks back one hour is part of preparation for winter. With Daylight Saving Time, there are endless debates as to whether it is still necessary as it negatively impacts people’s routines.
One common concern is the increase in the number of auto accidents that happen in its immediate aftermath. There are several reasons experts cite and city officials, researchers, safety advocates and law enforcement are warning drivers to be prepared.
Time change increases risk, especially for cyclists and pedestrians
New York has again implemented its “Dusk and Darkness” campaign for increased safety during autumn and winter when it gets dark earlier. Statistically, pedestrians are in more accidents after Daylight Saving Time. It also places bicyclists at risk. Because riders and pedestrians are not protected by an automobile of their own, they can face worse injuries and a greater chance of fatalities.
There will be a larger law enforcement presence in targeted areas immediately after the clocks change based on Vision Zero data. Drivers will be reminded to follow the speed limit, be attentive when making turns and to watch for riders and pedestrians. Other factors are drivers who are under the influence and fail to yield.
According to AAA, this is a national problem. Traffic deaths triple after dark and since there will be more nighttime driving, the combination places people in jeopardy. In the week after the clocks have been changed, there is a rise of more than 6% in auto fatalities. AAA advises drivers to take precautions such as changing their sleep patterns to adjust and even pulling over to rest.
After injuries or losing a loved one in an auto accident, advice is key
It is unfortunate that the time change is known to be a potential catalyst for motor vehicle accidents and there is little that can be done to ensure every driver understands this. When there is a collision, it is imperative for those involved to know what they may face and to have professional assistance.
Medical costs, being unable to work, needing help performing fundamental tasks and being unsure as to what the future holds are some of the challenges that can arise. For advice on how to proceed, contacting experienced professionals who can assess the case, formulate a strategy and help with moving forward is critical to make a full recovery in every way.