Daylight Savings Time… we all deal with it twice a year. This practice has been around for over a century. This past weekend, the clocks moved forward for the spring. When this happens twice a year, many of us get confused about the time change and maybe even feel groggy at work for a few days.
In fact, the day of the actual change can also lead to potential sleep deprivation, along with decreased levels of alertness, which raise the risk of fatal accidents. So, how do people who are always on the roads deal with this issue? How does Daylight Savings Time impact truck drivers on the road?
Well, due to the recent change, there are both pros and cons for truckers. Luckily, freight volumes look like they are increasing for truckers as we enter the Spring season. Truckers are driving more miles and, consequently, more hours each day.
While this is good news in that the truck drivers are receiving more money and business is better, it can lead to less sleep and dangerous driving conditions. Why is this? Well, the impact of Daylight Savings Time leads to drivers starting the day when it is darker in the morning.
In addition, this means that the sun does not set until later in the evening. For this reason, truck drivers may delay resting until dark. Therefore, truckers are on the road even longer than usual. In fact, the rates for fatal accidents and injuries with truck drivers begin to rise as springtime begins. On average, the fatal accidents tend to rise about 30 percent between March and the end of the summer months.
Interestingly, Daylight Savings Time also impacts the loading and unloading process. Fleet managers, as well as drivers, increase the amount of time they spend on loading docks because of the additional daylight in the evenings. And, as long as truck drivers are on the loading docks, they are still considered working. This could interrupt their sleep schedules, leading to higher risk of accidents.
It seems that Daylight Savings Time, a minor inconvenience to most, could be a serious issue for truck drivers. What do you think of the Daylight Savings Time impact on truckers?