TAMPA (FOX 13) - As most states spring ahead for Daylight Saving Time, experts are advising drivers use extra caution on the road.
The time change effects everyone differently, but some may experience extreme fatigue for a few days after the time change, and others may not notice a difference in their energy level.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration found that fatal crashes spiked by 17 percent on the Monday after the clocks spring forward, with the number of fatal crashes increasing by 6.3 percent across the following week, according to a University of Colorado study.
Depending on what time you leave for work or school you may have to adjust to sun glare now that it’s rising and setting later in the day.
“As we spring forward, drivers should be aware that the time change will also mean changes to driving habits,” Diana Imondi, AAA Northeast Manager of Traffic Safety Programs, said to WPRI. “Some drivers may suddenly find themselves driving into the rising or setting sun and there may be more sun glare during commuting hours.”
AAA offered the following suggestions to drivers:
- In the morning, watch for pedestrians when backing up in parking lots or driveways. Turn on your headlights to make yourself more visible.
- Leave more following room. When the sun is in your eyes it can be hard to see what the car ahead is doing.
- Watch out for children and others who are outdoors in the lighter evening hours.
- Remember to yield the right of way to pedestrians in crosswalks. Do not pass vehicles stopped at crosswalks.
Dangers associated with Daylight Saving Time don't just happen behind the wheel. DST has been linked to an increase in heart attacks. Hospitals are expected to see a 24 percent increase in heart attack patients the Monday after the time change.