On Sunday night, San Diego residents set their clocks back an hour, gaining an hour of sleep but essentially losing an hour of daylight. For many Californians, falling back an hour means that their morning commute is now void of sunlight. As a result, the Bakersfield Police Department has been warning drivers to be on the lookout for pedestrians, who may be much more difficult to spot during the darker morning hours.
The warning is not without cause, as nationwide statistics do show that the frequency of car vs. pedestrian accidents does increase when we leave daylight savings time to enter standard time.
This means that pedestrians, too, should be proactive in order to avoid being hit. Pedestrians should consider wearing reflective clothing, and they should be aware that drivers may have difficulties seeing them. Parents should make sure to talk to their children who may be walking to the bus stop or school when it is still dark outside. Parents may also be wise to change their schedules so that children will not have to walk home from school in the dark.
According to ABC 23, most of the pedestrian crashes that have taken place this year have involved alcohol, distractions or a failure to abide by traffic laws. Both drivers and pedestrians have been at fault for accidents.
When pedestrians are injured by motor vehicles, they are very likely to suffer serious or even fatal injuries. So, it is crucial for drivers and pedestrians to be extra vigilant now that we may all have reduced visibility during dark commutes. When someone is injured in a pedestrian accident, it can be important to seek legal counsel in order to obtain compensation for medical expenses and other costs.
Source: turnto23.com, “Leaving Daylight Saving Time means more pedestrian accidents,” Mark Christian, Oct. 29,2013