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The Short and Long Run Effects of Daylight Saving Time on Fatal Automobile Crashes


  • Sood Neeraj

    () (RAND Corporation)

  • Ghosh Arkadipta

    () (Pardee RAND Graduate School)


Prior literature suggests that Daylight Saving Time (DST) can both increase the risk of automobile crashes in the short run and decrease the risk of automobile crashes in the long run. We use 28 years (1976-2003) of automobile crash data from the United States, and exploit a natural experiment arising from a 1986 federal law that changed the time when states switched to DST to identify the short run and long run effects of DST on automobile crashes. Our findings suggest that (1) DST has no significant detrimental effect on automobile crashes in the short run; (2) DST significantly reduces automobile crashes in the long run with a 8-11% fall in crashes involving pedestrians, and a 6-10% fall in crashes for vehicular occupants in the weeks after the spring shift to DST.

Suggested Citation

  • Sood Neeraj & Ghosh Arkadipta, 2007. "The Short and Long Run Effects of Daylight Saving Time on Fatal Automobile Crashes," The B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy, De Gruyter, vol. 7(1), pages 1-22, February.
  • Handle: RePEc:bpj:bejeap:v:7:y:2007:i:1:n:11

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Felix Weinhardt, 2013. "The Importance of Time Zone Assignment: Evidence from Residential Electricity Consumption," SERC Discussion Papers serddp0126, Spatial Economics Research Centre, LSE.
    2. Osea Giuntella & Wei Han & Fabrizio Mazzonna, 2017. "Circadian Rhythms, Sleep, and Cognitive Skills: Evidence From an Unsleeping Giant," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 54(5), pages 1715-1742, October.
    3. Jin, Lawrence & Ziebarth, Nicolas R., 2015. "Does Daylight Saving Time Really Make Us Sick?," IZA Discussion Papers 9088, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    4. Jin, L. & Ziebarth, N.R., 2015. "Sleep and Human Capital: Evidence from Daylight Saving Time," Health, Econometrics and Data Group (HEDG) Working Papers 15/27, HEDG, c/o Department of Economics, University of York.
    5. Arthur Huang & David Levinson, 2008. "The Effects of Daylight Saving Time on Vehicle Crashes in Minnesota," Working Papers 201008, University of Minnesota: Nexus Research Group.

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