Watch out for walkers as daylight saving ends

2 April, 2023

With daylight saving time coming to an end, drivers are being reminded to drive to the conditions and be mindful of pedestrians as days get shorter.

Crash statistics analysed by RAA reveal an alarming jump in casualty crashes involving pedestrians in autumn and winter – up 24 per cent when compared with spring and summer – on South Australian roads between 2017-2021.

RAA Senior Manager Safety and Infrastructure Charles Mountain said the clocks going back served as another reminder to be vigilant amid the horrific number of road fatalities so far in 2023.

“The clocks going back this weekend means a lot more driving and commuting will be happening in the dark,” Mr Mountain said.

“Drivers should be aware that casualty crashes involving pedestrians jump by almost a quarter in the months when days are shorter.

“This may be due to lower visibility at certain times, so the advice is to be mindful of the conditions and adjust your driving accordingly.

“What we have seen on our roads this year – currently 37 fatalities compared with 18 this time in 2022 – reminds us that we need to pay full attention whenever we’re behind the wheel.

“We should always leave at least three seconds between ourselves and the car in front, to ensure there is enough time to come to a stop should the traffic in front of us stop suddenly.

“We should also always drive at a speed that allows us to safely stop should a hazard appear, and turn our headlights on if we’re driving through anything but sunny conditions.”

Mr Mountain said the data also reveals a spike in rear-end casualty crashes during the early-morning commute hour of 6am-7am in autumn and winter – up 73 per cent when compared with the rest of the year.