On March 12, daylight savings time will reduce everyone’s sleep by 1 hour. This can leave people feeling tired, and it can cause mix-ups with schedules throughout the day. It also can make driving on Sunday morning more challenging. If you’ll be driving in the morning on Sunday, March 12, here are three important driving tips for daylight savings time.
1. Make Sure You Have Enough Sleep
The hour of sleep lost to daylight savings time does more than just leave people groggy on Sunday. It correlates with a statistically significant increase in accident rates, according to an article published in Sleep Med opens in a new window. In fact, the effect is more than “statistically significant” — UPI opens in a new window reports that the hour of sleep lost can double drivers’ crash risk.
Unless you live in one of the few areas that don’t observe daylight savings time, there’s nothing you can do about your night being shortened by an hour on March 12. You can, however, make sure you still get enough sleep. Go to bed a little earlier than you normally would on a Saturday night, and, if you’re able to, sleep in a few extra minutes on Sunday morning.
Hopefully, you can regain that hour of sleep. Even if you don’t get a full 60 minutes back, every minute of sleep could help you stay awake and alert on Sunday morning.
2. Watch for Obstacles in the Morning
If you’re driving in the morning, be prepared for it to be darker than normal outside. Moving the clocks ahead an hour means people are operating an hour earlier in the sun’s cycle, so there won’t be as much light on in the morning. 8:00 a.m. on Sunday, March 12 will look a lot like 7:00 a.m. on Saturday, March 11.
If you’re not leaving the house until 10:00 or 11:00 a.m., any difference in light may be negligible. If you normally leave after sunrise but will now be leaving before sunrise, though, it will be more difficult to see obstacles in the road. Use your headlights and highbeams (as appropriate), and keep an eye out for everything from pedestrians and deer to bicyclists and garbage cans.
3. Be Wary of Ice and Snow
If you live in the Northern United States, also watch for ice and snow — especially in the morning. Winter storms can still cause precipitation in March, and ice and snow won’t melt as quickly because the sun won’t be up as soon. They’ll also be harder to see early in the morning.
To make sure you’re ready for any ice or snow on the road, leave a few minutes early. This will give you time to slow down if driving conditions are too slippery. Also, remember that bridges freeze before roads. There may be ice on bridges even if the rest of the road is only wet.
Make Sure You Have Proper Car Insurance Coverage
In light of these three risks, the weeks leading up to daylight savings time are a good time to review your car insurance coverage. Take a moment to look over your current protections, and consider whether you want to make any changes.
Moreover, should you be in an accident, hit an obstacle or go into a ditch, think about shopping around for a new car insurance policy. These incidents often cause drivers’ insurance rates to increase, but not all insurers increase rates the same amount. Comparing policies from other insurers may help you get the coverage you need at a lower rate than your current insurer will offer if you’ve been in an accident.
For help reviewing your car insurance coverage or comparing policies from other insurers, get in touch with us at Marine Agency Insurance. We’ve helped many drivers find the insurance they need, and we’re ready to get you the best coverage possible at the most affordable rate available.