Daylight saving time: Should it stay or should it go?

Published: Thursday, July 10 2014 7:45 p.m. MDT

Rep. Lee Perry, R-Perry, who also works as a lieutenant in the Utah Highway Patrol, said that there has been an increase in tired drivers who crash after clocks are changed.

"People’s biological clock starts to change and so we have a lot of fatigued drivers, and because of the longer daylight hours people seem to push their limits a little more than we should," Perry said.

Crash data from March of 2012 and 2013 from the Department of Public Safety however, showed that during the past two years there have been fewer crashes following the onset of daylight saving time.

"Sunday is always the lowest day for crashes and weekdays are always the highest, and it also depends on the weather. But just a simple analysis showed that day of daylight saving and the three days after day light saving had lower crashes than the week before," Research Analyst for DPS Gary Mower said.

Sterling Brown, a representative from the Utah Farm Bureau, said the bureau is reviewing the opinions of its membership and will take an official position by the start of the legislative session in January.

"Dealing with livestock, cultivating lands, and harvesting lands during the daylight is a considerable difference versus nighttime," Brown said.

"If we can create a system where there’s more daylight hours then that would help many of the farmers in Utah," he said.

Michael Sullivan, the Communications Director at the Governor's Office of Economic Development, said current sentiment is split along demographic lines. He said that a majority of people who want to get rid of daylight saving time are elderly and that those who want to keep it are employed and working a day shift.

Email: mcollette@deseretnews.com, Twitter: MirandaCollette

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