Time change reminder … and some other things to change, too

old time film image of a man setting a clock

This week, Daylight Saving Time is ending, don’t forget to set your clocks back. If the whole business makes you irritable, you are not alone. Check out this amusing clip – you might relate.

An hour may not sound like a lot of time to you, but try explaining that to babies, toddlers and pets who don’t understand why their routines are arbitrarily thrown off. Plus, even if it doesn’t sound like much, it can affect our routines and confuse our biological clocks off until we get into the groove. In a Daylight Savings explainer, Vox talks about some of the ways that the shifts involved in time changes can affect us.

In 1999, researchers at Johns Hopkins and Stanford universities wanted to find out what happens on the road when millions of drivers have their sleep disrupted.

Analyzing 21 years of fatal car crash data from the US National Highway Transportation Safety Administration, they found a very small, but significant, increase in road deaths on the Monday after the clock shift in the spring: The number of deadly accidents jumped to an average of 83.5 on the “spring forward” Monday compared with an average of 78.2 on a typical Monday.

And it seems it’s not just car accidents. Evidence has also mounted of an increase in incidences of workplace injuries and heart attacks in the days after we spring forward.

Despite the growing controversy over whether it’s beneficial or not, as long as it’s here, it’s a good biannual reminder. Here are some of the things you may want to do this weekend:

  • Change smoke alarm and CO2 alarm batteries
  • Check pressure / expiration date on any fire extinguishers
  • Replace furnace filters
  • Clean your dryer filter, hoses and vents
  • Throw away any expired medications
  • Reverse your ceiling fan direction