Tuesday, March 6, 2007 Editorial • Daylight saving comes three weeks earlier

Publisher’s note: This editorial is reprinted from the Tuesday, March 6. 2007 edition of the Lassen County Times.

This Sunday, March 11 begins Daylight Savings Time. Remember to set your clock ahead one hour at 2 a.m. that morning.

 “An extra yawn one morning in springtime, an extra snooze one night in the autumn is all that we ask in return for dazzling gifts. We borrow an hour one night in April; we pay it back with golden interest five months later,” – Winston Churchill

Daylight Saving Time has been around for more than 100 years and even earlier, but it wasn’t until 1966 that it became American law with the passing of the Uniform Time Act.  The law does not require anyone observe Daylight Saving Time; all the law says is if we are going to observe Daylight Saving Time, it must be done uniformly.

The Energy Act of 2005 signed by President George W. Bush changed DST from April and Standard Time from October to March and November, respectively. The idea is to add more daylight to the work day and save energy but even some members of the California Energy Commission are not sure if switching to DST will actually save energy, but it can’t hurt.

The fact is if we want to be on the same time as everyone else in Lassen County, we will set our clocks ahead and lose an hour of sleep.

The biggest obstacle facing citizens is that many of our computers and self-setting clocks have to be bypassed on March 11 and then reset in April. And we will have to revisit the issue in October and November.

Daylights Saving Time is also a good time for us to remind residents to make another change that could save lives — changing the batteries in their smoke alarms. Nonworking smoke alarms rob residents of the protective benefits home fire safety devices were designed to provide.  The most cited cause of non-working smoke alarms is worn or missing batteries.

And, while out getting new batteries for detectors, it is may also be a good chance to stock up on matches, candles, flashlights and more batteries. We survived the first major snowstorm of winter 2007 and its accompanying power outages. It is not unusual for Lassen County to continue to have more cold, snowy weather through March and April — old-timers will also say May and June.