THE HISTORY OF DAYLIGHT SAVINGS AND THE ANNUAL TURNING BACK OF TIME
Remember to set your clocks back one hour this Sunday, November 5, 2017. Did you ever wonder why we move the clock back in the fall and forward in the spring? Day Light Savings (DLS) has a long history and many ancient and modern-day arguments both for and against DLS. The original idea of DLS was first conceived by Benjamin Franklin way back in 1784. He outlined his idea and reasoning in an essay entitled, "An Economical Project”. It took many more years for Ben Franklins ideas about time change to seriously advance.
DLS is practices in many countries throughout the world but the additional hour becomes more impactful the further you live from the equator. If you live near the equator, day light and the darkness of night remain nearly the same length year-round. But the further you get from the equator or the closer you live to the North and South Pole there is a big difference as there is much more daylight in the summer months than in the winter months. Thus, Daylight Saving Time also known as (Summer Time) is usually not helpful in the countries located in the tropics nations near the equator generally do not change their clocks or participate in DLS.
Nearly 125 years after Ben Franklin first put forward the theory of DLS the idea started to get more attention when in 1907, William Willett wrote a pamphlet entitled “Waste of Daylight” that proposed advancing clocks (springing forward) starting in April, and turning back clocks by the same amount of time (falling back) in September. Because North America lies well north of the equator with large population regions in the north-east part of the United States, the benefits of such a practice for the United States was clearly understood and DLS was formally adopted in this country starting in 1918 when 'An Act to preserve daylight and provide standard time for the United States' was enacted by Congress on March 19, 1918 and today DLS is practiced in many countries around the world.
In the United States, the law and exact times have changed many times over the years, especially during World War I and II. The most recent changes to the law came in 2007 when Daylight Saving Time changed once again and was officially extended by two weeks and scheduled to officially begin at 2:00 AM on the second Sunday of March and end at 2:00 AM on the first Sunday of November.
ARGUMENS FOR AND AGAINST DLS:
The main purpose of Daylight Saving Time (called "Summer Time" in many places around the world) is to make better use of daylight hours. The clocks were changed during the summer months to move an hour of daylight from the morning to the evening which had a very positive impact on the local economy. Back in 1918 this allowed plantation owners in the south and farmers in the north more daylight hours to tend to their crops thus increasing production and overall wealth of the land owners. In more recent years, various studies including one done by the US Department of Transportation have shown that DST also reduces the nation’s energy consumption by nearly 1% each day during the summer months because less electricity is used for lighting and appliances with no significant increase in energy consumption during the winter months. This results in a significant amount of money and energy saved.
Other studies point to a public health benefit to Daylight Saving Time, as it decreases traffic accidents. Several studies in the U.S. have found that the DST daylight shift reduces net traffic accidents and fatalities by nearly one percent. In addition, there is a significant drop in pedestrian fatalities from cars during the same time period. Researchers from Carnegie Mellon University found a 186 percent decrease in the risk of being killed by a car for every mile walked during DLS time.
There may also be other more direct economic impacts and benefits to DST, as daylight evening hours encourage people to go out and shop which spurs economic growth during the slower retail months of summer.
Regardless of your take on DLS the annual change of time serves as a great reminder to take care of other very important safety issues in and around your home. It is the perfect time to:
- Change all of the batteries in your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors and insure they are still working properly.
- Inspect and ready your homes heating system to assure everything is in good working order to properly heat your home during the cold winter months.
- Inspect and clean your wood burning fireplaces to avoid fire hazards from built up soot or the incomplete combustion of hydrocarbons and tree sap.
- Check your natural gas system and gas lines and or make sure you have plenty of propane on hand to power any and all gas heaters, fireplaces and appliances during the cold winter months.
- Check the weather-stripping in and around all your homes doors and windows and replace them as needed.
- Check your homes insulation to assure it is properly insulated to hold in the heat.
Now that it is time to change your clocks ask yourself if it is time for you to change homes. Have you been considering a first-time home or selling your residence and buying a new home? Typically, home sales slow during the winter months and there is more inventory and opportunity to buy and sell real estate, so now may be the perfect time to not only change your clocks but to also change your home. Contact Rick and Jim Properties today at 843-469-6570 / 6580 or look us up on Facebook at Rick and Jim Properties to learn more about all the ways we can help you with all of your real estate needs. We are full service agents and can help you with buying and selling. We also offer professional mortgage services, property management assistance, title insurance, homeowners insurance, home warranty plans as well as commercial and business brokerage services so contact us today and let us get started working for you.