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Does the DST really save anything?

Atualizado: 2 de dez. de 2021

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Daylight-Saving Time - DST

When we Brazilians hear the acronym DST, what immediately comes to our mind is, Sexually Transmitted Diseases which in English would be STD, but in the US, it means Daylight-Saving Time, i.e. "Horário de verão."

The DST was first adopted by the Germans during the First World War, followed by England and the United States in 1966.

Daylight-saving Time, literally means "tempo de economizar luz diurna". Americans use a little saying to remember when they should advance or delay their clocks, "Spring Forward and Fall Back," i.e., in the Spring they should set their clocks 1 hour ahead and in the Fall set them backward 1 hour.

In fact, the above saying is a good-humored way they found to remember what to do when they have to adjust their clocks, seeing that it is a pun and may also be translated as "Pula para frente e cai para trás".

While here in Brazil, we set our clocks forward on the 3rd Sunday in October and back on the 3rd Sunday in February* always at 12 o'clock a.m. In the US, they jump forward 1 hour on the second Sunday in March at 2:00 p.m. and fall back 1 hour on the first Sunday in November also at 2:00 p.m.


HERO - Actually, at least in the US, DST does not save much, but it's kept for economic reasons, because on days when there's sunshine after school or work, people feel encouraged to go shopping. A lot of industries are benefited as well, such as the barbecue gear manufacturers. Manufacturers have found out that every single extra month of DST would mean profits ranging from $ 150 to $ 200 million.

VILLAIN - On the other hand, studies show that an average American worker loses, due to the consequent insomnia, 40 minutes of sleep a night when the clocks are set forward, as a result, on the first Monday after DST, 25% more heart attacks are reported, the number of car accidents rise by about 17% and accidents at work by 6%.

*Except when Carnival Sunday falls on the 3rd Sunday in February.



acronym - sigla

i.e. - do latim "id est" que quer dizer "isto é"

saying - ditado

spring (irregular verb) - saltar

pun - trocadilho

gear - apetrechos

range - regular verb -Variar dentro de limites específicos





Prof. Walmir Bastos

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