Does Daylight Saving Time Do More Harm Than Good?

Lerner & Rowe Injury Attorneys
New Mexico daylight saving time

Everyone has an opinion on New Mexico daylight saving time. Some people think the extra hour of daylight during the winter months is important for the safety of school-aged students, while others hate losing a precious extra hour of daylight during the warmer months. On March 5, 2021, a 22-18 vote led by the Democrat Senate approved a bill that would keep New Mexico on daylight saving time throughout the year. It is still unclear whether the measure will be brought before the floor and passed prior to the end of the legislative session that ends on March 20.

In case the Land of Enchantment is required to spring forward again this year, it would be good for locals to know more about New Mexico daylight saving time and its effects on public safety from the New Mexico injury lawyers at Lerner and Rowe Injury Attorneys.

New Mexico Daylight Saving Time 2021

This year, daylight saving time will begin at 2:00 a.m. on Sunday, March 14. Daylight saving time will continue until Sunday, November 7, 2021. The clocks will jump ahead an hour at 2:00 a.m., resulting in an hour of lost sleep from Sunday to Monday for many. The sun will also rise an hour later, meaning more time in the darkness for early risers. On the plus side, however, the sun will set an hour later in the evening. But how does this affect us beyond lost sleep and extra sunshine?

Daylight Saving Time Initially Causes More Car Accidents

Many of us have heard the rumor that says car accidents (in addition to workplace injuries and heart attacks) increase after daylight saving time. But is it true?

Data analyzed by the University of Colorado at Boulder indicates that there is a 6% spike in deadly car accidents in the week following the start of daylight saving time in March. In addition, the study found that the farther west someone lives in their time zone, the higher the risk of being involved in a deadly crash.

Scientists theorize that springing forward—even by just an hour—can disrupt some people’s circadian rhythm, resulting in poor concentration and impaired cognitive skills. This disruption can take as long as a week for their brains to adjust to the change. Even a mild lapse in judgment can cause a fatal car wreck, meaning the number of accidents often jump noticeably.

Daylight Saving Time Decreases Car Accidents Overall

In spite of the initial spike in deadly car wrecks in the first week of New Mexico daylight saving time, the number of car accidents actually begin to decrease in the months during which daylight saving time is in effect. But why and how does this occur?

Daylight saving time increases the amount of daylight experienced by most nine-to-five workers, many of whom will enjoy an extra hour of sunshine and heightened road visibility when commuting home. This can not only protect motorists, but pedestrians and bicyclists who may not otherwise be as visible at certain times of the day.

One study published in Accident Analysis & Prevention predicted that if daylight savings time was made permanent throughout the year, pedestrian accidents and deaths would decrease by 13 percent. It also indicated that motor vehicle fatalities would decrease by three percent overall.

Injured in Albuquerque? Contact Lerner and Rowe Injury Attorneys

Until New Mexico lawmakers can come to a consensus regarding daylight saving time, residents should exercise additional caution during the week of March 14 to March 21, when a higher number of drowsy drivers may be on the road. To prevent accidents related to New Mexico daylight saving time, get plenty of sleep and be aware of your surroundings, even during your regular commute.

If you are injured during daylight saving time due to the negligence of another motorist, contact an Albuquerque car crash lawyer at Lerner and Rowe Injury Attorneys to get the most compensation for your injuries. Call our office at 505-544-4444 day or night, 24/7. You can also chat with a live representative online or submit your case details using our secure contact form. The consultation is free and you won’t pay a cent out of pocket unless we win your case.

The information on this blog is for general information purposes only. Nothing herein should be taken as legal advice for any individual case or situation. This information is not intended to create, and receipt or viewing does not constitute, an attorney-client relationship.