For most people, having the clocks go back on October 28th is a godsend, as it gives us all an extra hour in bed. However by sleeping 60 minutes longer through the early daylight hours we get less time in the sun, darkness falls faster and our journeys become more treacherous in the evening.
So claims GEM Motoring Assist, a road safety and breakdown cover company, which is backing the Lighter Later campaign to have Britain’s clocks pushed forward by one hour throughout the year. This, it says, would move that ‘extra’ hour of daylight from the morning to the evening, making our end-of-day commutes safer.
It argues that with an extra hour of daylight in the evening, drivers, school children and cyclists would avoid poor weather, decreased visibility and bad road conditions, which all contribute to a rise in the number of accidents and hazardous breakdown situations.
David Williams MBE, CEO of GEM Motoring Assist, said: “There is strong evidence to show that road accident rates continue to rise each autumn, directly after the clocks go back. The reduced daylight hours not only mean that motorists are driving in the dark during rush hour, but pedestrians and other road users, particularly school children, are also at an increased risk.”
A daylight saving bill requesting just such a change has been put before Parliament, with the hope of instigating a cross-departmental analysis of the potential costs and benefits of moving the clocks forward for all, or part of, the year. However the Bill failed to complete its passage through Parliament in time and will make no further progress.
“We were extremely disappointed earlier this year when the House of Commons session ran out of time before the Daylight Saving Bill could be passed, particularly as we believe the change could significantly improve road safety for UK motorists,” Williams said. “ We will continue to show our support for this campaign until it finds its way back onto the agenda, which we hope is sooner rather than later.”
Would you support a year-round advancement of the clock? Would you prefer to drive home in relative daylight or would the prospect of darker mornings infuriate you? Vent your collective spleens in the comments below.