Reminder: Time change this weekend

Published 9:31 pm Wednesday, October 31, 2012

The temperature is not the only thing dropping down this week. On Sunday, the clocks will all dial back by one hour, thus “Falling Back.”

A 2001 U.S. public service announcement noted that, “You can’t stop time, but you can turn it back one hour at 2 a.m. when day-saving time ends and standard time begins.” And that is when it starts — at 2 a.m. Sunday, or in fact more accurately at the very last second of the minute 1:59 a.m. Most people can just set their clocks back one hour backwards before they fall asleep.

Everyone throws Thomas Jefferson credit for this time change but it was actually proposed and introduced much later by William Willet in 1907, after being invented by entomologist George Vernon Hudson in 1895.

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Willet endlessly promoted the idea of Daylight Saving Time and it was then passed in 1918 by Congress.

Congress noted the bill was designed to promote play for children outdoors, utilize the nation’s outdoor parks and recreation and it also extends the shopping and retail opportunities available. Its main advantage, according to the bill Congress passed, was that it saves energy — something that was important to the nation after World War I and in an energy crisis at the time.

All U.S. states except for Hawaii and Arizona participate in the time change. A handful of European countries participate as well.

To Selma and Dallas County there is really one focus on the time change and that is fire safety for the time change.

According to Capt. James Murphy of the Selma Fire Department, when the clocks change back an hour, or “fall back” on Sunday, families should make this time change synonymous with checking detectors in the home.

“It is good that we change them at least twice a year. Every time the time changes, change you batteries then you know they will be good,” Murphy said, adding families should check carbon monoxide detectors and review the family escape plan. The fire department is urging refreshers on these fire safety plans because they see a spike in home fires during the cold weather months.

“House fires start when the temperatures start to get cooler and people start lighting their heaters,” he said. “So generally you see an increase in the fall and winter time.”