Creating change by raising awareness of causes that ensure a better future.

October 27, 2011

Remember to Set Your Clocks Back on Nov. 6, 2011!

It's that time again, time to change our clocks back one hour, fall back on November 6, 2011 & remember to change the batteries in every smoke detector in every room of your home!

Daylight savings time, sounds a bit confusing. An easy way to remember which way to change your clocks (one hour a head or one hour back) is the old saying...

Spring forward, fall back. It helps us to remember how Daylight Saving Time affects our clocks twice each year. Each spring we set our clocks forward one hour and each fall we set them back one hour.


Well, to some degree we may have Benjamin Franklin to thank.

Franklin, who penned the proverb, "Early to bed and early to rise, makes a man healthy, wealthy and wise," was among the first to suggest the idea. In a 1784 essay he wrote that adjusting the clocks in the spring could be a good way to save on candles.


It was first established in 1918, but then repealed a year later. During World War II, the country again took up the practice to conserve energy from 1942 to 1945.

In 1966 the United States officially adopted the Uniform Time Act of 1966, which outlined Daylight Savings Time to begin on the last Sunday of April and end on the last Sunday in October.

The Energy Policy Act of 2005 mandated a change to the observed dates so now DST begins at 2 a.m. on the second Sunday of March and ends at 2 a.m. on the first Sunday in November.

Incidentally, states do not have to comply with the act and, in fact, two states, Arizona and Hawaii, do not.

So do we really economize, as Benjamin Franklin said we would, by adjusting our clocks? It appears, in our modern world, not really.

Reason for Daylight Saving Time:
Conserve energy.
To make better use of daylight.
Saves lives because people travel home in the light which is safer.
Can prevent crime because people do their errands in the daylight which is safer.
Contrary to popular belief, it was not created for farmers nor does it benefit farmers.

Current Observance of Daylight Saving Time-

Worldwide: William Willett would be happy to know that daylight saving time is now employed in about seventy countries around the world, including almost every major industrialized nation. It affects well over a billion people each year.

In several other countries, there is current debate about adopting DST. Sunrises, sunsets, and day lengths of countries near the equator do not vary much during the year, but even in such countries DST is sometimes utilized, especially for energy conservation.

United States: In the United States from 1987 through 2006, a daylight saving time period of almost seven months was in effect: from 2 a.m. on the first Sunday in April to 2 a.m. on the last Sunday in October.

A law passed in 2005 extended the U.S. daylight saving time period by about one month, beginning in 2007. Thus for 2007 and beyond, the daylight saving time period is: 

2 a.m. on the second Sunday in March
2 a.m. on the first Sunday in November

Currently, the entire country observes this DST period of almost eight months, except for the states of Arizona and Hawaii, and the U. S. insular areas of Puerto Rico, the U. S. Virgin Islands, American Samoa, and Guam--all of which have chosen to stay on standard time all year.

The DST Period in the United States:

For 2005, from Sunday April 3 to Sunday October 30.
For 2006, from Sunday April 2 to Sunday October 29.
For 2007, from Sunday March 11 to Sunday November 4.
For 2008, from Sunday March 9 to Sunday November 2.
For 2009, from Sunday March 8 to Sunday November 1.
For 2010, from Sunday March 14 to Sunday November 7.
For 2011, from Sunday March 13 to Sunday November 6.
For 2012, from Sunday March 11 to Sunday November 4.
For 2013, from Sunday March 10 to Sunday November 3.

Also Associated With Daylight Saving Time:
Change the batteries in your smoke detectors in your home.

Fire Department Safety Reminder:
Working Fire Detectors Save Lives!

Fire departments encourage people to change the batteries in their smoke detectors when they change their clocks because Daylight Saving Time provides a convenient reminder. It pays to take their advice to heart. A working smoke detector more than doubles a person's chances of surviving a home fire. More than 90% of United States homes have smoke detectors, but at least a third of them are likely to have dead or even missing batteries. Play it safe and take a few minutes to check, repair, and replace the smoke detectors in your home, garage, and workplace.

More About Daylight Saving Time and Sources for the Facts Above:

World Time Zone
Daylight Saving Time Web Exhibit
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