Saturday, March 13, 2010

ICBC’s top five smart driving tips
for Daylight Saving Time

As British Columbians forward their clocks this Sunday for Daylight Saving Time (DST), ICBC is reminding drivers, cyclists and pedestrians to get some extra rest and take extra care next week due to the grogginess some people may feel.

While the days will consist of more daylight, the time change can have a significant effect on some people’s sleep patterns, resulting in a disruption to their circadian rhythms or ‘biological clock.’ An increase in daylight and warmer temperatures also means more pedestrians and cyclists on our roads, so drivers, cyclists and pedestrians should remember to use caution and leave extra time to get to their destinations – particularly during the Monday commute.

Crash statistics illustrate a higher driving risk the first work day after Daylight Saving begins. In British Columbia according to the five-year average (2005-2009), on the Monday following the springtime change, there were 850 crash incidents, compared to 690 incidents the Monday before the time change, which represents a 23 per cent increase in crash incidents.

Here are ICBC’s top five smart driving tips for Daylight Saving Time:

  1. Get some rest: Try to get to bed earlier – and to help yourself to fall asleep faster –exercise during the day, have a hot bath or shower before going to bed and treat yourself to a book and a warm glass of milk.
  2. Plan ahead : Give yourself extra time to drive to and from work next week.
  3. Slow down and keep your distance, especially with more pedestrians and cyclists on the road.
  4. Lights on: Continue to use your headlights at all times to ensure you are visible to pedestrians and other road users. Make sure your headlights are clean (splattered mud can cloud them) and that all bulbs (both high and low beam) are working properly.
  5. Be a role model : Set an example by making smart driving decisions – whether it’s to your children, passengers or other road users. Your smart decisions can have a significant influence on others.

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