Does Violence Increase When Daylight Saving Time Ends?
There have been a number of studies examining the effects of losing an hour of sleep in the spring and gaining of an hour in the fall as a result of daylight saving time. Now, a study from the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia suggests the rate of assaults increases by about 3 percent in the day immediately after daylight saving time ends, which is November 5 this year.
Researchers were surprised by these results and instead had expected to learn the opposite: that aggression increases when daylight saving time begins in the spring – when we theoretically lose an hour of sleep – and decreases in the fall when we gain an hour of sleep. They based these expectations on research suggesting there are more car accidents and injuries at work, greater stock market losses, lower test scores, and higher suicide rates on the Monday after daylight saving time begins in the spring.
One theory for these somewhat surprising results is that people are better rested on the Monday after daylight saving time ends – and more able and likely to act on our feelings of aggression.