Don’t forget to fall back!

On Sunday November 5 at 2 am all clocks in North Carolina fall back one hou. Photo courtesy Pixabay.

COMMUNITY

By Michelle Cassell
Managing Editor 

On Sunday, November 5, at 2 a.m., all clocks in North Carolina and much of the rest of the country fall back one hour to accommodate Daylight Savings Time.

Why are we doing this?

According to the Bureau of Transportation Statistics, before the establishment of time zones in 1883, there were more than 144 local times in North America. The resulting time differences between adjacent towns and cities were not critical when it took days to travel from place to place.  However, as railroads began to proliferate, the many different time zones led to confusion and difficulty in scheduling.  As a result, the major railroad companies began to operate on a coordinated system of four time zones starting in 1883.

After World War II, it became obvious that the need for coordination of transportation zones among all different modes of transportation would be necessary.  When the Department of Transportation was created by Congress in 1966, it was assigned “the responsibility of regulating, fostering, and promoting widespread and uniform adoption and observance of standardized time” within each time zone.

Daylight Saving Time (DST) was enacted as a legal requirement by the Uniform Time Act of 1966. This act mandated standard time within the existing time zones and established a permanent system of uniform DST, including the dates and times for twice-yearly transitions. While State governments cannot independently change time zones or the length of DST, they can exempt themselves from DST, independent of DOT authority or permission.

Hence, we have N.C. House Bill 326, which would adopt DST year-round.  It was introduced in March in the General Assembly. It passed the House in May, but stalled in the Senate. Similar efforts have been initiated at the Federal level and among various states.  But no efforts thus far have been successful.  So, unless you live in Arizona (except for the Navajo Nation), Hawaii, Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, American Samoa, Guam and the Northern Marianas you will have to remember to fall back and spring forward.


Michelle Cassell is a seasoned reporter who has covered everything from crime to hurricanes and local politics to human interest over the course of 35 years. As managing editor, she hopes to encourage writers of a wide range of backgrounds and interests in TLR’s coverage of Southern Orange County news. 

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