It’s that time of year again – the clocks go back on Sunday marking the end of British Summer Time for 2013.
The end of British Summer Time means that from 2am on Sunday morning it's time to set your clocks and watches back by one hour.
The result will be that darkness arrives sooner in the evenings but we gain an extra hour of daylight in the mornings.
There has been much debate in parliament about whether the UK should be brought in line with central European time which could help with business but the argument is yet to be resolved.
Separate studies released yesterday showed 70 per cent of the UK are opposed to turning the clocks back, and two-thirds of parents believe the time shift gives their children jet-lag symptoms for a week afterwards.
In 2011 Conservative MP Rebecca Harris tried to get a Bill through Parliament which would have led to an investigation into the benefits of moving the clocks forward two hours in the summer, and an hour in the winter.
But the Bill was held up in the House of Commons and never made it onto the statute books.
With darkness falling earlier Devon County Council is reminding pedestrians, cyclists, motorcyclists and horse riders to wear reflective and fluorescent clothing to ensure they can be seen on the county’s roads.
Car drivers are also being urged to be cautious and look out for all other road users, especially at night and also in mist, rain and fog, when visibility is limited.
Interactive road signs around Devon will display messages appealing to drivers to look out for bikers, in particular, as 21 motorcyclists were either killed or seriously injured between October 2012 and February 2013.
Safety messages will also be displayed on buses, asking pedestrians and cyclists to “brighten up and get noticed”, while drivers are reminded to “watch out for pedestrians and cyclists”.
Between October 2012 and February 2013 in Devon, 16 pedestrians (including one child), and 13 cyclists were seriously injured. During that time 17% of all severity accidents occurred in the rain.
The advice from the county council is:
• Pedestrians should, wherever possible, use marked crossing points on roads, although they do not have right of way over traffic unless they are on a zebra or light-controlled crossing;
• Cyclists must comply with the law by using a white front light, a red back light and a red reflector at the back;
• Horse riders should select crossing points very carefully and show courtesy to drivers who have slowed down for them;
• Drivers should travel at an appropriate, lower speed for the conditions and look out for – and give space to – walkers, cyclists and horse riders. Check your ‘blind spot’ before changing course or direction as there could be a motorcyclist alongside you;
• All road users should look out for each other and take care, particularly in icy conditions or if there are leaves on the road.
Horse riders can apply for a free high-viz tabard (while stocks last), in a scheme supported through the Investing in Devon Fund and the British Horse Society, by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
Clocks will go forward again on March 30 next year.