Carter Craig, Attorneys at Law

The dangers that accompany switch away from Daylight saving time

So it's been about a month since we moved our clocks back, thus ending Daylight Saving time. Now comes the time of year when the temperature dips, the days get shorter and you start counting the days until you don't have to drive in and drive home from work in the dark.

But even though the trade off to such a time shift is more sleep, there is a serious societal danger associated with tuning away from Daylight Saving time -- and it may not be well known, despite the fact that it will make plenty of sense once you hear it. When we switch away from Daylight Saving time, there are more car vs. pedestrian accidents.

When the days get shorter and there's less daylight, it only makes sense that more pedestrian traffic accidents would occur -- and national statistics back up the theory.

So what can you do with this information? Well, pedestrians are often drivers, and vice versa. So there should be a mutual respect in this regard. If you are a pedestrian, you should wear bright or reflective clothing, especially at night. In addition, make sure you look both ways before you cross the street (elementary, yes, but it's still good advice) and refrain from jaywalking. Only cross the street where there are crosswalks.

For drivers, it's a bit simpler: keep an eye out for pedestrians at all times. When you are approaching an intersection, you should take a glance at the corners to see if there are pedestrians there and to see if they are considering crossing. Stay focused and use good judgment. Lacking these tenants of road safety, a car may hit a pedestrian, causing that pedestrian to suffer serious or catastrophic injuries. The driver could be held liable for the pain and suffering they have caused that pedestrian.

Source: 23 ABC, "Leaving Daylight Saving Time means more pedestrian accidents," Mark Christian, Oct. 29, 2013

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