It feels a lot earlier this year, but this is the weekend to change your clocks ahead one hour for most of the Northern Hemisphere.
Interestingly, the practice of adjusting our clocks to maximize daylight during waking hours carries some controversy. While primarily supported for the effect on commerce and energy use, some countries have abandoned the practice, citing impacts on both individual health and their agricultural industries. If nothing else, the minor inconvenience of having to adjust every clock in your home is a frequent complaint.
Clock shifting has also had some unexpected consequences, as illustrated in these anecdotes from http://www.webexhibits.org/daylightsaving/k.html
Draft Status, Vietnam War
A man, born just after 12:00 a.m. DST, circumvented the Vietnam War draft by using a daylight saving time loophole. When drafted, he argued that standard time, not DST, was the official time for recording births in his state of Delaware in the year of his birth. Thus, under official standard time he was actually born on the previous day–and that day had a much higher draft lottery number, allowing him to avoid the draft.
To keep to their published timetables, trains cannot leave a station before the scheduled time. So, when the clocks fall back one hour in October, all Amtrak trains in the U.S. that are running on time stop at 2:00 a.m. and wait one hour before resuming. Overnight passengers are often surprised to find their train at a dead stop and their travel time an hour longer than expected. At the spring Daylight Saving Time change, trains instantaneously become an hour behind schedule at 2:00 a.m., but they just keep going and do their best to make up the time.
For homeowners, the clock shift can serve as a good reminder to take care of a few bi-annual chores around the house. Here are things we at HomeSpot encourage homeowners to do twice a year to keep their homes in great working order.
- Check and replace the batteries for smoke and carbon monoxide detector maintenance.
- Take down or put up window screens.
- Fertilize lawns, plants and trees.
- Clean out gutters.