Effects of the time change on drivers

Published 17/10/2019
cambio de hora conductores

Do you know the influence of time change on drivers? Since every year in October, a change of time takes effect.

Next Sunday, 27 October, when it is 3 o’clock in the morning, clocks will be turned back so that it is really 2 o’clock. This is how we will pass from summer time to winter time. This means that night will fall earlier. Consequently, we are going to explain all the effects that this time change will have on driving.

Effects of the time change on drivers

This time change will especially affect those people who have to commute to work every day by car. It also will affect those drivers who spend many hours on the road working at jobs that require staying constantly alert to avoid an accident. But, what are the possible effects on drivers as a result of this time change? We will explain.

  • Fatigueis one of the main consequences. In other words, you can feel more fatigue than usual.
  • This type of fatigue can lead to a sensation of somnolencethat can make you drop your guard and lower your reflexes when something unexpected occurs. Distances are not perceived in the same manner and, besides, reaction time is not fast enough.
  • Alteration of your body’s biological rhythm may be accompanied by a change in your  state of mind, making you more irascible than usual.

Advice for driving during the first days after the time change

Because of it, if you are a driver, pay attention to the following recommendations to  err on the side of caution and avoid  suffering because of the time change. Also, you should be especially careful if you have a propensity to suffer from migraines or if you are exposed to stressful situations.

Stable timetables for food and rest

Frequent timetable changes upset your organism. In this respect, it is important to follow very firm routines. Eat and dine at fixed times, and, above all, go to bed every day at the same time. This way you will return to normality as soon as possible. The symptoms of this particular jet lag will subside in a few days.

Slow down

Your reflexes during the first days following the time change are not the same. To prevent dangerous situations, it is necessary to moderate your speed and circulate calmly, conscious of the fact that braking and precautionary distance must be higher. Respect the speed limit and recommendations.

Use your lights correctly

Your night vision will not be the same either. Consequently, if you have to drive at night, you will have to use your full beam and dipped headlights correctly, respecting the rules of the road. Remember that full beams can end up blinding other drivers and provoking dangerous situations. Make sure that you use  your lights well in order to avoid mishaps.

Increase the safety distance

In addition to the braking distance, you also must increase the safety distance. Do not drive on the heels of the car in front you. Better to leave at least enough room to allow you to react in time and avoid an accident because of any unexpected event that can occur on the road. If you are driving on a two-lane road where passing is difficult, taking precautions is even more highly recommended.

Stay hydrated

Drinking water is necessary every day, especially when changing from one time to another. You must keep your body and your mind hydrated, since, otherwise, their function is reduced. Being well hydrated will help to keep you awake and will reduce the likelihood of suffering from a migraine because of lack of rest or difficulty in falling asleep.

Pay attention to your state of mind

Also, do not forget to pay attention to any change in your state of mind. If you are irritated, stressed or having trouble concentrating, it is not a good idea to take to the road, since you could have an accident. If this is the case,  better stop and rest, before you continue.

A time change affects drivers largely by producing effects like fatigue, tiredness or somnolence, and, possibly, changes in the state of mind. This is why it is important to follow the advice above to arrive at your destination without an accident or any type of mishap.

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