New clock change “would prevent 80 road deaths a year”

Written by Ellie

The clocks go back an hour this weekend and that spells bad news for road safety, according to GEM Motoring Assist.

The road safety organisation is calling on the UK government to adopt Single/Double British Summertime (SDST), which adjusts the clocks to GMT + 1 in the winter and GMT + 2 in the summer.

Doing so would prevent 80 deaths and more than 200 serious injuries on the UK’s road each year, GEM Motoring Assist says.

The number of fatal pedestrian collisions increases by 10 per cent during the four weeks after the clocks go back, according to the National Audit Office.

Recent figures from the Department for Transport already showed a 10 per cent rise in pedestrian fatalities year on year in 2016 compared with 2015.

“Dark spells danger for pedestrians,” said GEM Motoring Assist’s road safety officer Neil Worth who rubbished arguments made against SDST.

“We believe the reasons for opposing the change – generally from those representing the interests of farmers and postal workers – are irrelevant and outdated.

“After all, farming technology is vastly improved, and postal deliveries take place throughout the day, not purely in the early mornings.”

Mr Worth added that estimates from DfT suggest the benefits of a move to SDST would amount to nearly £140 million annually, with just a modest £5 million one-off investment in communicating the change.

“GEM, in line with all safety groups, supports a change to SDST, because it will make a significant contribution to reducing deaths and serious injuries on our roads,” he concluded.

Molly Benton, brand manager at Fuel Card Services, comments: “It may only be an hour difference but motorists should employ greater care in the weeks following any clock change.”

Photo: wundervisuals/iStock

Posted on 24th October 2017

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