This year, daylight saving time (DST) ended on Sunday, November 3 at 2:00 a.m. and we got back that much-missed hour of sleep. However, each year the increase in darkness tends to dampen people’s alertness and poses threats to safety, especially on the road. Keep the following tips in mind for a safe daylight saving time transition:
- Be alert and look at what’s ahead on the road. Darkness falls right around the time of rush hour, when traffic is at its peak. Drivers and pedestrians aren’t used to the decreased visibility and it becomes difficult to distinguish objects and judge distances and speeds of other vehicles. In dusk and darkness, our color recognition and peripheral vision are compromised.
- Try to adjust your sleep schedule a few days before DST. According to some health studies, many people experience a disruption in their internal clock when their sleep patterns are altered by DST. Even with the extra hour of sleep, the earlier setting of the sun coupled with changed waking times disrupts our body’s rhythms. This may increase drowsiness and lead many drivers to doze off at the wheel.
- Prepare your vehicle for night driving. Keep headlights and signal lights clean and in good working condition. Wash the windshield and replace wipers regularly. Make sure headlights are properly aligned and mirrors are adjusted for optimal visibility.
- Make yourself visible. The dark plus potentially poor weather means drivers of cars and motorcycles must remember to turn on their headlights. Consider using running lights or low beams on cloudy, overcast days that make vehicles hard to see. High beams are best when increasing sight distance. Just be conscious not to blind oncoming drivers or those in front of you, and switch to low beams.
If you experience an accident during daylight saving time because of difficult driving conditions, please contact the Milwaukee personal injury attorneys at Hupy and Abraham for a free consultation at 800-800-5678.