Professor Quippy: Let’s put daylight savings time to bed

Professor QuippyI’m still recovering from the latest leap forward, so I may be cranky, but the evidence is mounting that daylight savings time (DST) is a BAD IDEA.

In two studies, the numbers show that traffic accidents increase by about seven percent the days following the jump and industrial accidents increase by about six percent.

According to the lead researcher of one of the studies, Stanley Coren, the problem is sleep deprivation. People are chronically sleep deprived in North America, the sleep expert says. Take away an extra hour and they start falling into periods of “micro-sleep.”

“Micro-sleep” lasts between 10 seconds and a minute, and causes a total loss of bodily function. Actually, you lose track of the time-space continuum, which is fine if you’re sitting in my first-year undergraduate lecture on the nature of the space-time continuum, but possibly lethal if you’re operating a chainsaw, minigun, or something moving, such as a car.

I know what you’re thinking. DST saves energy, right? Wrong. According to a 2006 California study, DST actually cost an extra $8.6-million (U.S.) in electricity.

Not to mention the cost of all the lawsuits in chainsaw-related injury claims.

More information in The Mother of All Mondays. You’ll discover a coterie of chainsaw enthusiasts here.

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3 Responses to Professor Quippy: Let’s put daylight savings time to bed

  1. Rickey Henderson March 12, 2008 at 7:10 am #

    Hey hey, Rickey found the comments section! (it had been eluding Rickey for days). Micro sleep, huh? Sounds fun–Rickey needs to give it a shot.

  2. Daniel March 12, 2008 at 7:13 am #

    I say the solution is to just leave DST in place year round. Then no sleep deprivation adjustment.

    No one seems to like my idea though.

  3. Mark A. Rayner March 12, 2008 at 9:15 am #

    I like your idea Daniel!

    My apologies Rickey — I think I’ve had a comments malfunction! m.

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