Wow! This year is just flying right by! Can you believe it’s March already? Not only is it March, but it’s almost halfway over! Unfortunately, whether you’re ready or not; it’s time to Spring Forward!
At 2am tomorrow the clocks will jump ahead to 3am. Which means 60 minutes will be shaved off your precious sleep time.
Items like your analog watch, microwaves, stove, car, etc. may need to be have their clock manually changed. Luckily, most cell phones, activity trackers, tablets, computers, DVRs, etc. automatically update; but it’s always best to double check.
So if you’re going to bed before 2am and have clocks to manually set, it’s probably best to update them before you go to bed so you’re not late for anything.
Here are some interesting facts I found about Daylight Saving Time:
The U.S. Department of Transportation is actually in “charge” of Daylight Saving Time.
The U.S. Department of Transportation stated that switching to Daylight Saving Time reduces energy use, saves lives by preventing traffic accidents and decreases crime.
A study in Finland found a spike in heart attacks during the first week of the new time. Researchers associated the results with sleep deprivation, which affects heart health.
A Canadian researcher found a 5% to 7% increase in fatal car accidents in the three days after the switch to Daylight Saving Time. Other studies have seen a similar increase in accidents in the fall when we gain that hour back.
Researchers have also found switching to Daylight Saving Time uses 1% less energy for lighting but 2 to 3% more for heating and air-conditioning.
In the U.S., Hawaii and most of Arizona, as well as American territories, don't observe Daylight Saving Time.
Less than 40% of the countries in the world use Daylight Saving Time.
Some countries use it to make better use of the natural daylight in the evenings. The difference in light is most noticeable in the areas close to the Poles, i.e. furthest away from the Earth's Equator.
This April marks the 100th Anniversary. Even though Germany is commonly known as the first country to implement Daylight Saving Time, Thunder Bay in Ontario, Canada implemented Daylight Saving Time already in 1908. The first use of modern Daylight Saving Time in Germany was on April 30, 1916.
Daylight Saving Time isn’t for farmers, as you may have learned in school.
The general concept is to move an hour of sunlight from the early morning, when many would sleep through it, to the evening, when you could most likely do more with the light. “For most people, an extra hour of daylight in the evening after work or after school is much more usable than the hour of daylight in the morning,” said David Prerau, the author of “Seize the Daylight.”
Daylight Saving Time also has a big impact on the economy. When days are longer or rather, when they seem longer due to extended daylight – people tend to spend more money on everything from tourism and recreation to shopping and restaurants. Michael Downing, a Tufts University professor and author of Spring Forward: The Annual Madness of Daylight Saving Time, stated, that one of the original arguments for Daylight Saving Time – it would save energy and money – is just plain false today: “We’re told we’re saving energy, but when Americans go outside and go to the park and go to the mall, we don’t walk – we get in our cars and drive. So for the past 100 years, the dirty secret is Daylight Saving Time increases gasoline consumption.”
Before lights were installed in professional stadiums, Major League Baseball had to end some games in ties because of darkness, and fans often felt robbed by such dissatisfying endings. In the two seasons after daylight saving began, the number of ties decreased to five from 22.
So if your city partakes in Daylight Saving Time, set your clocks ahead at 8pm or 9pm tonight so it’s one less thing to worry about in the morning. Be sure to get plenty of sleep tonight. Drink lots of water to stay hydrated and refreshed. Get plenty of sunlight once you awake as daylight helps to stop your body from continuing to produce melatonin. Also, be extra careful on the road. The darker part of the day now falls in the morning hours and people may be tired. It's a good time to play it extra safe on the roads.
For more information on Daylight Saving Time facts, check out the sources below:
USA Today – “Love it or hate it, here comes Daylight Saving Time”- http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation-now/2016/03/09/daylight-saving-time-spring-forward/81540110/
Time and Date – “Daylight Saving Time – DST”- http://www.timeanddate.com/time/dst/
NY Times – “Daylight Saving Time: Why Does It Exist? (It’s Not for Farming)” - http://www.nytimes.com/2016/03/12/us/daylight-saving-time-farmers.html
Time – “Is Daylight Saving Time a Conspiracy to Get You to Spend More Money?” - http://time.com/money/3735872/daylight-saving-time-conspiracy-stimulus/