Reno Daylight Saving Time and Car Accidents

Reno offers a variety of indoor and outdoor activities for both locals and tourists. Scenic drives, snowy adventures, 24/7 casinos, and a variety of tasty food options make it an ideal place to live and visit during the spring. What is not so ideal is the potential increase of injuries to individuals this time of year after we “spring forward” for daylight saving time (DST). More specifically, the correlation between Reno daylight saving time and car accidents.

With that in mind, our Reno personal injury lawyer delves a bit deeper to explore the potential links for the increase of car collisions in Reno around DST and ways to offset and avoid getting hurt in a wreck. 

DST and Increased Collisions in Reno

For some, the concept of daylight saving time sparks fiery debate every spring. While many like an extra hour of evening sunshine, others raise concerns about its potential impact on health and safety.

Research shared by the University of Colorado Boulder, however, supports a link between the loss of an hour and an increase in car accidents stating that: “Fatal car accidents in the United States spike by 6% during the workweek following the “spring forward” to daylight saving time, resulting in about 28 additional deaths each year.”

Regardless of which side you fall on, it’s always a good idea to be extra cautious on Reno roads during the days following a time change. That said, here are four potential causes for an increase of Reno daylight saving time car accidents. 

  1. Drowsy Driving: Losing an hour of sleep during “spring forward” can disrupt sleep patterns and lead to fatigue. Drowsy drivers have slower reaction times and may struggle to focus, increasing the risk of accidents. Data released by the Sleep Foundation supports this theory stating that drowsy driving is a factor in 21% of Fatal Crashes.
  2. Disrupted Circadian Rhythm: Our bodies have natural internal clocks that regulate sleep and wakefulness. DST throws this rhythm off, making some people feel tired and sluggish in the days following the change. This can further impair driving ability.
  3. Distracted Driving: Some studies suggest that sleep deprivation can make it harder for drivers to concentrate leading to an increased risk of crashes with less visible motorcyclists, pedestrians, and bicyclists
  4. Shifting Light: The sudden change in sunset times can disrupt drivers’ adjustment to low-light conditions. This can be especially dangerous during the first week of DST, as drivers may misjudge visibility and reaction times.

Moving Forward: Safety on Reno Roads

By understanding the potential risks and implementing safe driving practices, Reno residents and visitors can ensure a smooth and accident-free transition during daylight saving time.

Here are a few helpful tips:

  • Get Enough Sleep: Aim for seven to eight hours of sleep before getting behind the wheel, especially during the days following DST changes.
  • Be Alert: Recognize the signs of drowsiness, such as heavy eyelids, difficulty focusing, or drifting out of your lane. Pull over and take a nap if needed.
  • Adjust Headlights Early: Ensure your headlights are on during periods of low visibility, even if it seems early in the evening due to the DST shift.
  • Minimize Distractions: Avoid using your phone, eating, or engaging in other activities that take your attention away from the road.

Get Legal Help After a Reno DST Car Accident 

Our Northern Nevada personal injury team at Lerner & Rowe hopes that you now have a better understanding of the contributing causes for daylight saving car accidents in Reno and how to help prevent them. However, we do understand that no matter what you do accidents can still happen. Should you get into a DST car accident caused by another driver then contact us for immediate assistance.

Our accomplished Reno injury lawyer is available to assist you 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Call 775-644-4444 for a free, no-obligation consultation.

The information on this blog is for informational purposes only. It is not meant to serve as legal advice for an individual case or situation. This information is not intended to create an attorney-client relationship nor does viewing this material constitute an attorney-client relationship.