Campaign for extra daylight hours

* Safety groups call for lighter evenings * to save 80 lives and 200 serious injuries a year * Online petition to add your support...

24 March 2011
Campaign for extra daylight hours

Safety groups are calling on motorists to back a campaign to change the way clocks go forward and back to create an extra hour of daylight year round.

The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents and road safety group Brake say having an extra hour of daylight all year would help to prevent 80 deaths and 200 serious injuries each year.

The call for longer evenings has become an annual event, but RoSPA says a Private Members' Bill now working through Parliament has the best chance of success since the last experiment into longer evenings ended in 1971.

It says 5000 deaths and 30,000 injuries have been caused by the darker evenings since then, and is calling on motorists to sign an online petition and demonstrate public support for MP Rebecca Harris's Bill, which has passed its second reading with a large majority.

RoSPA and Brake also point to a Cambridge University study that suggests the move could cut carbon emissions by nearly 500,000 tonnes a year, and that such a move could boost tourism by up to 3.5 billion a year.

In 2009, the Department for Transport estimated it would cost 5 million to implement, but would then save more than 138 million a year.

Harris's Bill is calling for a review of all of the evidence surrounding the benefits of making the switch, which RoSPA and Brake hope would lead to a three-year trial.

How would it be done
Adding an extra hour of light in the evenings throughout the year would be achieved by switching to what is called Single/Double Summer Time (S/DST).

This would move the clocks ahead of their usual time by an hour in the winter and by two hours in the summer. See a more detailed explanation of S/DST here on RoSPA's website.