Sunday, March 11, 2007

Canada follolws US lead in Daylight Saving Time

Interesting that we seem to have simply followed the US lead. I wonder if Mexico did too. However that far south perhaps daylight saving is not used at all. Maybe this is another sign of "deep integration". I imagine those opposed to a North American Union will get even less sleep! Well at least Saskatchewan is declaring its independence and keeping to standard time. Many farmers have always opposed daylight saving. Its seems farm animals refuse to adjust their clocks as well!

Early daylight time means less shuteye
Clocks spring ahead 1 hour Sunday in most parts of Canada
Last Updated: Saturday, March 10, 2007 | 10:37 PM ET
CBC News
Many Canadians will no doubt be feeling the sleepy eyes of March on Sunday morning, as daylight time at 2 a.m. in each time zone traditionally means the springing ahead of clocks by one hour before bedtime.

This year, daylight time, established in most parts of the country, comes three weeks earlier than usual, starting the second Sunday in March instead of the first Sunday in April — after the ushering in of spring — and ending late as well, the first Sunday in November.

Dr. Brian Murray, Toronto neurologist and sleep specialist, says he would do away with daylight time altogether.
(CBC) The three-weeks-early start is the result of Canada following the lead of the U.S., a move designed to save energy.

Sleep experts, however, say many Canadians don't get enough shuteye already, and studies have shown the time change can affect how the brain functions the Monday after the clocks have changed.

"There's a small increase in traffic accidents that occurs in the period of time where an hour of sleep is lost, which is interesting," says Dr. Brian Murray, a neurologist and sleep specialist at the Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre in Toronto.

"I would be happy if we did away with it just for the nuisance of having to reset clocks and computers and all."

Continue Article

Time for time concerns
The earlier time change is presenting some challenges this year.

Software companies, including Apple and Microsoft, have issued patches for users to update their systems, while Health Canada has warned people to check medical devices that may not register the time change.

The new North American standard for daylight time has caused concern that computers and electronic devices will be confused and that it will cost the economy millions of dollars.

But David Probst, a computer science professor at Concordia University in Montreal, says the confusion is not likely to happen.

"You will find people who record the wrong television show on their VCR, and you might even have some gadgets that stop working, but the seriousness will be so insignificant that there will be no headlines whatsoever on Sunday morning," he predicts.

But he says he thinks there could be some loss of productivity if people who forget about the time change show up late for meetings or work on Monday.

Elliot Katz, a senior product manager at Microsoft, says he thinks the time change will not cause massive problems.

"We really don't expect to see anything significant happen. The most we envision is people double check that their systems have been updated properly so they're not late for meetings and things of that kind."

U.S. President George W. Bush signed legislation in August 2005 calling for the earlier daylight time.

The new schedule was introduced to try to help save energy, with the expectation that people would not need their lights on as early in the evening.

But debate continues about how effective the change will be at reducing energy consumption.

More daylight means less ZZZs
Daylight time in Canada is usually regulated by provincial and territorial governments. From 1987 to 2006, it was from the first Sunday of April to the last Sunday in October.

Most of Saskatchewan uses Central Standard Time year round. There are also small pockets in B.C., northern Ontario, Quebec and Nunavut where daylight time is not observed.

According to the Better Sleep Council Canada, the time change will simply add to the sleep deficit that many Canadians carry.

It recommends:

Encouraging sleep by easing into bed.
Turning off the television.
Not exercising before bedtime.
Not consuming alcohol or coffee before going to bed.

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