End of Daylight Savings

When daylight savings comes to an end, changes occur out on our roads that can affect how our road users drive. Here are some things we suggest you take into consideration:

  • It gets darker earlier. You may have been driving home in daylight and now must adjust to driving home in darkness or dusk. This change can be challenging for pedestrians and cyclists.

  • Autumn brings cooler, rainy weather and the rainy season can cause more unexpected incidents. It's a good time to get your car, bike or scooter checked.

  • As the sun gets lower on the horizon, sun strike is worse and can affect visibility.

Adjusting your driving behaviour when daylight savings ends can be as simple as the following: 

  • Make sure to keep your windscreen clean and keep a pair of sunglasses in the car.

  • Motorcyclists can put a strip of dark tape (e.g. electrical tape) across the top of their visor to reduce sun strike. Tinted visors are not good for riding at dusk.

  • If the sun is blinding you, slow down and increase your following distance. You need to be able to stop in the distance of clear road you can see ahead of you.

  • If you can't avoid the sun, you can always pull over until it moves out of the way.

  • In Hamilton, drivers heading west in the evening will now find themselves driving towards the setting sun. See if you can adjust your driving route or work time for a few weeks so you either leave earlier or later.

  • Ensure you fill your washer bottle regularly as your windscreen will get dirty with spray and splashes from wet roads.

  • Increase your driving distance when the roads are wet to increase the required stopping distance in an emergency.

How does daylight savings time impact driving and the number of accidents?​

Studies have shown that more people are active during the evening. When daylight savings ends, we lose an hour of afternoon sunlight. This increases the likelihood of accidents since more time is spent on the road in the darkness with decreased visibility.

Seasons change rapidly, and the start and end of daylight savings leaves little time for people to adapt. As a result, drivers may still behave as if it's light outside, even when it's dark. They may be inclined to drive faster, and, at the same time, pedestrians may be less attentive. We need to ensure that we are looking after each other to minimise the potential risks.​

Also check out10 top tips for winter driving

Page reviewed: 14 Apr 2020 3:56pm