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Do Car Accidents Increase following the Change to Daylight Saving Time?

Research shows that fatal car accidents increase by up to eight percent the week following the switch to daylight saving time. The main reason is that the time change and additional daylight hours can cause sleep deprivation, leading to drowsy driving and accidents.

Experts say that drowsy driving can be just as dangerous as drunk driving. Both impair a person’s ability to assess and react to changing road or traffic conditions. Drivers may not brake or stop in time, or not carefully look while changing lanes. Drowsiness can even cause a driver to fall asleep at the wheel.

The seemingly innocent one-hour time change can adversely affect our physical and mental capacities. We may feel foggy, tired, and sluggish for up to two weeks afterward. Interestingly, other research shows that the fall time change makes virtually no difference in the number of accidents.

Following are some tips to help drivers safely change to daylight saving time on Sunday, March 13, this year.

  • Stay on schedule. Keep your regular school, home, and work schedules to help your body ease into the difference after the time change.
  • Stock up on sleep. Some people go to bed 15 minutes earlier during the four or five days leading up to the time change to offset the drowsiness that comes with the time adjustment.
  • Avoid heavy meals and drinks before driving. When a person feels drowsy after the time change, a heavy meal can add to the sleepiness. Limit meals until your body adjusts.
  • Reduce light at night. Studies show that light from cell phones, e-readers, and the TV can cause insomnia, which leads to fatigue the next day. A fatigued driver will experience reduced reaction times on the road and may not make good driving decisions.
  • Limit alcohol and caffeine at night. Both are known to interfere with sleep cycles, wreaking havoc on driving attentiveness.
  • Take a nap. No guilt about napping if it can help restore your vitality and help you ease into the time change.
  • Exercise. Walks and other activities can stave off the fatigue that comes with the time change.
  • Make sure teen drivers get enough sleep. Inexperience, lack of sleep, and the time change can pose a real danger on the roads.
  • Stay vigilant for signs of drowsiness while driving:
    • Crossing over road lines
    • Hitting a rumble strip
    • Tailgating the driver ahead
    • Being honked at by other drivers
    • Feeling drugged or having heavy eyelids, blinking frequently
    • Having difficulty focusing, daydreaming, having rambling thoughts
    • Yawning repeatedly and rubbing your eyes
    • Suffering microsleeps, falling asleep for a few seconds, which is plenty of time to cause a severe accident
  • Stay home. If you are negatively affected by the time change, do not get behind the wheel until your body and mind adjust. Move the timing of a car trip or errands or have someone else drive.

Your body and mind will adjust to the time change. Just be patient, vigilant, and safe while it does.

Media Car Accident Lawyers at the Law Office of Deborah M. Truscello Help Clients Injured in Car Accidents Caused by Negligent Drivers

The switch to daylight saving time brings extra challenges to motorists and an increased chance of a car accident. If you were involved in an accident involving a drowsy driver, reach out to the Media car accident lawyers at the Law Office of Deborah M. Truscello. We will investigate the cause of the accident and fight to obtain the compensation for which you are entitled. Learn more at a free consultation by filling out an online registration form or calling (610) 892-4940 .Our office is in Media, Pennsylvania. We represent clients in Media, Bucks County, Chester County, Delaware County, Lancaster, Montgomery County, Norristown, Philadelphia, Reading, West Chester, and throughout Pennsylvania.

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To discuss your case in a free, confidential consultation with attorney Deborah M. Truscello, Esq., call or fill out the form below. 

From our office located in Media, PA we serve the surrounding areas of

  • Bucks County
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Including but not limited to
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Why Clients Choose Deborah

Heather A
I have known Deb for years now and it all started in 2009 when I got hurt and needed legal help with my workers comp. I randomly chose Deb because of the things I read on her website and I liked that she had a take charge attitude about just about everything. She out-lawyered someone and got me more in a settlement for that and then also worked with me on another case and won that one as well for me. If you get to know Deb and her personal story, you will get to know an amazing single mom who has had her own struggles and has come out so much stronger. She will fight for you if you do your part as a client and follow her guidance. I have now used two women lawyers in Media and three men and I actually found the two women far more effective and both won my cases that the men lost. Without Deb and my other lawyer winning the cases for me that they did - I could have found myself disabled for good with no money to pay for the life I live because I can’t work now. I credit my ability to be able to eat and have transportation and all. I couldn’t be more grateful for their hard work they did for me. Deb has won two of my cases and I would absolutely refer others to her for the same kinds of cases and I would use her again if I ever needed her help again!
Daveen Carpenter
Deborah's team went above and beyond to get my case settled quickly. I am forever grateful
Rebecca Porter
If you ever need a worker’s compensation attorney, I highly suggest using Deborah Truscello. I had a work accident injury and was referred to Deborah. She was with me every step of the way, with this long-drawn-out process. She was there any time I had questions or needed advice on my rehabilitation. Now my case is settled. I am very happy how things turned out and I owe it all to her. I can't thank her enough. I will use her again if I ever need too.
Jackson Jones
Deborah is an excellent lawyer. She was professional, knowledgeable, and made me and my case feel important. She was always accessible and answered all of my questions. I would definitely recommend Debbie to anyone injured at work and in need of legal services.
I am a client of Deborah Truscello and also a woman of color. Deborah Truscello is not a bigot nor is she a racist. I hired Ms. Truscello back in 2016 for a very nasty custody case against a crazy man who has a history of dragging all his children through the court system. Ms. Truscello has been nothing but professional and well organized. She is very reliable and always available. I could contact her any time of the day or night and she is always responsive to my text messages, calls, and emails. If you are considering hiring her as your attorney I highly recommend you schedule a consultation and see for yourself you will not be disappointed.
Andrew Kriegh
Amazing law firm, they have helped me so much and enlightened me to the options I have, and to the right doctors who are still treating my issues... Very professional and very great people glad to have her in my team!!

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