Most Pennsylvania residents have internal clocks that help them regulate when they should go to sleep and when it is time to get up. Some people are so reliant on their abilities to judge time that they do not even need alarms to get themselves up and off to work on time. However, there is one time of year that researchers have found to be particularly difficult on workers all across America.
That time of year is the period immediately following the spring switch to Daylight Savings Time. A report suggests that most workers get between a half hour and an hour less sleep on the night of DST which appears to directly contribute to an increase in workplace accidents on that day. In addition to an increase in accidents on the job, accidents on the roads also jump on the day following the start of DST.
While workers are generally responsible for getting enough rest, employers are responsible for providing safe working environments for their employees. That can include utilizing sufficient safety equipment to prevent accidents, updating employee training when new protocols are needed and providing employees with enough breaks to ensure they are fully focused on their jobs.
The evidence suggests that employees may need a little bit more help staying safe when their internal clocks are forced to jump forward an hour each spring. In addition to an increase in the number of workplace injuries occurring after DST, the report also noted that the severity of those injuries also increased as employees showed signs of fatigue.
Workplace accidents happen every day, not only following the annual switch to DST. Workers who have suffered injuries while performing their occupational duties may consider working with attorneys who can advise them of the legal rights and possible options for seeking out damages related to their workplace accidents.
Source: The Atlantic, "Be Careful! Workplace Injuries Spike Following The Switch To Daylight Savings Time," Rebecca J. Rosen, Mar. 10, 2014