Does Clock Change Risk Road Safety?

Sun 25th Oct 2020

Some of the UK’s biggest road safety organisations have claimed that turning the clocks back in October could be making the nation’s roads much more dangerous by adding more darkness at key times of the day.

It is estimated that three times more children are injured on the way home from school once the clock go back, with more light in evenings thought to cut casualties. There are on average 80 deaths and approximately 200 serious injuries every year caused by the October time change and safety campaigners are calling for an end to the pointless practice.

“There are so many compelling reasons for making the change, and no relevant arguments at all for retaining the present arrangement,” said GEM chief executive Neil Worth.

“An experiment to use year-round British Summer Time for three years from 1968 led to an 11 per cent reduction in road casualties in England and Wales, as well as a 17 percent drop in Scotland.

“Experts now estimate 80 deaths and more than 200 serious injuries would be prevented on the UK’s roads each year.

“According to the Home Office, there would also be a three per cent reduction in crime.”

GEM estimate that there are 50 per cent more fatal and serious accidents on the roads in the early evening than there are in the morning.

The halt on October clock changes is backed by IAM Roadsmart, who also point out that it could save the economy £160million.

“The UK should at least set up a two-year trial to prove the benefits once and for all,” said the charity’s policy and research director Neil Greig.

“Stopping the change of clocks would be easy to implement and, without question, would save lives – there are no good road safety reasons why this isn’t happening.”