IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this paper

The unexpected effects of daylight-saving time: Traffic accidents in Mexican municipalities


  • Salas Rodriguez, Hugo
  • Hancevic, Pedro


Approximately 70 countries worldwide implement a daylight-saving time (DST) policy: setting their clocks forward in the spring and back in the fall. The main purpose of this practice is to save on electricity. However, by artificially changing the distribution of daylight, this practice can have unforeseen effects. This document provides an analysis of the impact of DST on traffic accidents in Mexico, using two empirical strategies: regression discontinuity design (RDD) and difference-in-differences (DD). The main finding is that setting the clocks forward an hour significantly lowers the total number of traffic accidents in the country’s metropolitan areas. However, there is no clear effect on the number of fatal traffic accidents.

Suggested Citation

  • Salas Rodriguez, Hugo & Hancevic, Pedro, 2020. "The unexpected effects of daylight-saving time: Traffic accidents in Mexican municipalities," MPRA Paper 101835, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  • Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:101835

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    File Function: original version
    Download Restriction: no

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Lisa A. Kramer & Mark J. Kamstra & Maurice D. Levi, 2000. "Losing Sleep at the Market: The Daylight Saving Anomaly," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 90(4), pages 1005-1011, September.
    2. Andrew C. Worthington, 2003. "Losing Sleep At The Market: An Empirical Note On The Daylight Saving Anomaly In Australia," Economic Papers, The Economic Society of Australia, vol. 22(4), pages 83-93, December.
    3. Austin C. Smith, 2016. "Spring Forward at Your Own Risk: Daylight Saving Time and Fatal Vehicle Crashes," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 8(2), pages 65-91, April.
    4. Matthew J. Kotchen & Laura E. Grant, 2011. "Does Daylight Saving Time Save Energy? Evidence from a Natural Experiment in Indiana," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 93(4), pages 1172-1185, November.
    5. Andrew C. Worthington, 2003. "Losing Sleep At The Market: An Empirical Note On The Daylight Saving Anomaly In Australia," Economic Papers, The Economic Society of Australia, vol. 22(3), pages 85-95, September.
    6. Mirza, Faisal Mehmood & Bergland, Olvar, 2011. "The impact of daylight saving time on electricity consumption: Evidence from southern Norway and Sweden," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 39(6), pages 3558-3571, June.
    7. 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.
    8. Awad Momani, Mohammad & Yatim, Baharudin & Ali, Mohd Alauddin Mohd, 2009. "The impact of the daylight saving time on electricity consumption--A case study from Jordan," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 37(5), pages 2042-2051, May.
    9. Ferguson, S.A. & Preusser, D.F. & Lund, A.K. & Zador, P.L. & Ulmer, R.G., 1995. "Daylight saving time and motor vehicle crashes: The reduction in pedestrian and vehicle occupant fatalities," American Journal of Public Health, American Public Health Association, vol. 85(1), pages 92-96.
    10. Hancevic, Pedro & Margulis, Diego, 2018. "Horario de verano y consumo de electricidad: el caso de Argentina," El Trimestre Económico, Fondo de Cultura Económica, vol. 0(339), pages .515-542, julio-sep.
    11. Toro, Weily & Tigre, Robson & Sampaio, Breno, 2015. "Daylight Saving Time and incidence of myocardial infarction: Evidence from a regression discontinuity design," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 136(C), pages 1-4.
    12. Hill, S.I. & Desobry, F. & Garnsey, E.W. & Chong, Y.-F., 2010. "The impact on energy consumption of daylight saving clock changes," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 38(9), pages 4955-4965, September.
    13. Kellogg, Ryan & Wolff, Hendrik, 2008. "Daylight time and energy: Evidence from an Australian experiment," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 56(3), pages 207-220, November.
    14. Jennifer L. Doleac & Nicholas J. Sanders, 2015. "Under the Cover of Darkness: How Ambient Light Influences Criminal Activity," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 97(5), pages 1093-1103, December.
    15. Karasu, Servet, 2010. "The effect of daylight saving time options on electricity consumption of Turkey," Energy, Elsevier, vol. 35(9), pages 3773-3782.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. Tomas Havranek & Dominik Herman & Zuzana Irsova, 2018. "Does Daylight Saving Save Electricity? A Meta-Analysis," The Energy Journal, , vol. 39(2), pages 35-61, March.
    2. Jonathan James, 2023. "Let there be light: Daylight saving time and road traffic collisions," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 61(3), pages 523-545, July.
    3. Kudela, Peter & Havranek, Tomas & Herman, Dominik & Irsova, Zuzana, 2020. "Does daylight saving time save electricity? Evidence from Slovakia," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 137(C).
    4. Christian Bünnings & Valentin Schiele, 2021. "Spring Forward, Don't Fall Back: The Effect of Daylight Saving Time on Road Safety," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 103(1), pages 165-176, March.
    5. Havranek, Tomas & Herman, Dominik & Irsova, Zuzana, 2016. "Does Daylight Saving Save Energy? A Meta-Analysis," MPRA Paper 74518, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    6. Guven, Cahit & Yuan, Haishan & Zhang, Quanda & Aksakalli, Vural, 2021. "When does daylight saving time save electricity? Weather and air-conditioning," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 98(C).
    7. Hancevic, Pedro & Margulis, Diego, 2016. "Daylight saving time and energy consumption: The case of Argentina," MPRA Paper 80481, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    8. Nicholas Rivers, 2018. "Does Daylight Savings Time Save Energy? Evidence from Ontario," Environmental & Resource Economics, Springer;European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 70(2), pages 517-543, June.
    9. Flores, Daniel & Luna, Edgar M., 2019. "An econometric evaluation of daylight saving time in Mexico," Energy, Elsevier, vol. 187(C).
    10. López, Miguel, 2020. "Daylight effect on the electricity demand in Spain and assessment of Daylight Saving Time policies," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 140(C).
    11. Bergland, Olvar & Mirza, Faisal, 2017. "Latitudinal Effect on Energy Savings from Daylight Savings Time," Working Paper Series 08-2017, Norwegian University of Life Sciences, School of Economics and Business.
    12. Mirza, Faisal Mehmood & Bergland, Olvar, 2011. "The impact of daylight saving time on electricity consumption: Evidence from southern Norway and Sweden," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 39(6), pages 3558-3571, June.
    13. 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.
    14. Choi, Seungmoon & Pellen, Alistair & Masson, Virginie, 2017. "How does daylight saving time affect electricity demand? An answer using aggregate data from a natural experiment in Western Australia," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 66(C), pages 247-260.
    15. Eric Jonathon Osborne‐Christenson, 2022. "Saving light, losing lives: How daylight saving time impacts deaths from suicide and substance abuse," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 31(S2), pages 40-68, October.
    16. Jin, Lawrence & Ziebarth, Nicolas R., 2015. "Does Daylight Saving Time Really Make Us Sick?," IZA Discussion Papers 9088, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    17. Joan Costa‐Font & Sarah Fleche & Ricardo Pagan, 2024. "The welfare effects of time reallocation: evidence from Daylight Saving Time," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 91(362), pages 547-568, April.
    18. Felix Weinhardt, 2013. "The Importance of Time Zone Assignment: Evidence from Residential Electricity Consumption," SERC Discussion Papers serddp0126, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
    19. 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.
    20. Blake Shaffer, 2019. "Location matters: Daylight saving time and electricity demand," Canadian Journal of Economics/Revue canadienne d'économique, John Wiley & Sons, vol. 52(4), pages 1374-1400, November.

    More about this item


    traffic accidents; daylight saving time; difference-in-differences; regression discontinuity; municipalities in Mexico;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • D04 - Microeconomics - - General - - - Microeconomic Policy: Formulation; Implementation; Evaluation
    • O18 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Urban, Rural, Regional, and Transportation Analysis; Housing; Infrastructure
    • R41 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Transportation Economics - - - Transportation: Demand, Supply, and Congestion; Travel Time; Safety and Accidents; Transportation Noise

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:101835. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a bibliographic reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: Joachim Winter (email available below). General contact details of provider: .

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service. RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.