Auto Accidents Spike After Springing Forward
We’re about to spring forward and gain an extra hour of daylight. You’d think that a little extra light would help people see better on the roads, but unfortunately there tends to be a spike in traffic accidents the week following the switch to daylight savings time. When you set your clocks forward an hour on Sunday, March 13th, 2016 @ 02:00 AM, make sure you are fully awake the next time you get behind the wheel of your car.
Tired drivers are dangerous drivers
Most can sleep in on Sundays and won’t be too affected by the loss of an hour until Monday morning rolls around and we have to get up an hour earlier to make it into work on time. A study by the University of Colorado shows a 17% increase in fatal traffic accidents in the US following the shift from Standard Time to Daylight Savings Time. The Monday after the shift being the most dangerous and most accident-prone day. Now, it’s unfair to give Daylight Savings Time all the blame. The real problem behind this spike in auto accidents is that people are getting behind the wheel more tired and sleep deprived than before. Even though we know that this day is coming, most of us have a hard time preparing ourselves for losing an hour of sleep. We end up staying up later, sleeping worse because we’re stressing about having to get up earlier than usual, and by the time we are driving to work we are groggy, grumpy and sleep deprived. Sleep deprivation is almost as bad – and as dangerous – as driving under the influence.
Avoid traffic accidents and get a good night’s sleep after springing forward
Sleep deprivation causes distracted driving, sloppy driving, and slow reaction times. This is a deadly combination. This year, make sure you get a good night’s sleep before you have to get up and drive to work. If you usually sleep 7 hours, make sure you are still getting 7 hours of sleep. And, if you feel too tired to drive, work out a carpool with colleagues, take public transportation, or ride your bike. Talk to an AAI Central agent about getting the best auto insurance policy to protect you in the case of an accident.