Clock change confusion

With clocks going back on October 30th, most people are thinking ‘great, another hour in bed’, but some people don’t see it that way. And this is why.

With clocks going back the mornings will be lighter, but night time will be upon us sooner.

Companies like Institute of Advanced Motorists (IAM) dislike this idea because they say more accidents happen in the night time (when it’s dark) therefore if it goes darker earlier (when it’s rush hour) there will be more accidents. Which is a fair point.

IAM chief executive Simon Best said: “Changing the current summertime system would save lives. Children especially are more likely to be out and about after school and an extra hour of daylight will make them more visible.”

I guess another argument could be that if the clocks go forward we get more time to enjoy the sunlight when we are awake, which is the main point leading the 10:10 lighter later campaign.

The 10:10 campaign proposal is this: “The idea is simple: we shift the clocks forward by one hour throughout the entire year. We would still put the clocks forward in spring and back in autumn, but we would have moved an hour of daylight from the morning to the evening, when more of us are awake to enjoy it.”

Benefits of this campaign are things like reduced emissions because lights in houses are on less, saving the NHS money (£138 million) on casualty expenses, reduction in crime because of less darkness and the extra sun may just make the nation a little happier.

The most important for motorists however, will be the reduction in road deaths – estimated at 80 per year – particularly in the evening hours.

However, if the clocks go forward people in northern areas such as Scotland will suffer. With mornings in Scotland already being pretty long and dark, an added hour won’t help much and could ultimately lead to more early morning accidents on the roads.

With clocks going back this week, the campaign seems to be gathering steam, with a debate taking place in parliament and a growing number of people jumping aboard the campaign.

For the UK’s drivers and car owners, the potential changes could help those evening commutes and even eliminate the dreaded ‘low sun’ – a winter driving condition which can cause accidents on the UK roads.

In the meantime, for advice on looking after your car in the winter months take a look at a Winter guide to your car.