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Time changes can pose challenges for drivers

A lot is going on this upcoming weekend. For one, it is Halloween weekend, with Halloween coming up on Saturday. Also, this upcoming weekend signals the end of daylight savings time for this year. At 2 a.m. on Sunday, the clocks will go back an hour here in California and we will be back on standard time.

Thus, it is important to not forget to set your clocks back this weekend. However, this is not the only thing it is important to remember in relation to the shift out of daylight savings time. Another is that this time shift can pose some challenges for drivers in the days/weeks after it occurs.

One of the challenges are changed visibility conditions for certain times of the day. For example, for morning and late afternoon commuters, the time change could mean a change in the likelihood of facing sun glare while driving, something that could significantly impact visibility. For evening commuters, their commute may suddenly become much darker, and thus more visibility-challenging, as a result of the time change. It is important for drivers to be aware of what specific visibility condition changes they could face as a result of the time change and adjust their behavior accordingly.

The time change also could increase the risk of drowsy driving for some drivers. This is in part because time changes can sometimes result in a disruption of sleep patterns, which could leave a person more tired than usual. Thus, as we shift out of daylight savings time, it is important for drivers to keep an eye on whether the shift is affecting their sleep and to make sure to stay out from behind the wheel if they are not properly rested. Driving while tired is no inconsequential thing, it could put a driver and others in serious danger.

Visibility problems and drowsy driving are both things that have the potential to cause auto accidents. Thus, one hopes that, in the wake of the upcoming time change, all drivers here in California will take care to take proper steps to address any driver visibility issues they are facing and to avoid drowsy driving. It is always important for drivers to stay aware of how changed conditions, such as time changes, changed weather conditions, changed road conditions or changed visibility conditions, could have traffic safety effects and what to do to stay prepared for these effects.

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