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Renewed push for Connecticut to change time zones, avoid 'falling back'

A state representative plans to reintroduce a bill calling for Connecticut to adopt Atlantic Standard Time

HARTFORD, Conn. — Spring forward, fall back. Year after year, people in Connecticut change their clocks with the seasons. However, a state representative wants to change that.

For years, State Rep. Kurt Vail, a Republican representing Somers and Stafford, has proposed a bill that would get rid of the time change. Vail plans to reintroduce the bill, calling for Connecticut to adopt Atlantic Standard Time.

The change would be welcomed by many who said the super early dark days are a dreaded part of winter.

"I just don't think it's a necessity anymore. I think it's just kind of like a silly thing now," said Ashley Lopez of Enfield.

"I just think it, like, makes the night come faster, it makes me tired earlier. Things get colder, darker, I'd just prefer if it stayed lighter later," said Katie Fitzgerald of Longmeadow, Mass.

RELATED: Experts say now is the time to plan for holiday travel

Experts say falling back with Daylight Saving Time can also cause problems on the roads. According to AAA, there were almost 70% more crashes between 5 and 6 p.m. in the two weeks following the clock change than the two weeks before. A darker evening commute, putting both drivers and pedestrians at risk.

"It's a very dangerous time of year, especially for pedestrians more likely to have a pedestrian crash once it's dark out," said AAA spokesperson Amy Parmenter.

Disrupted sleep patterns due to the time change are another danger according to AAA.

While the idea of getting rid of the time change sounds good to many, it's not simple. States can opt-out of Daylight Saving Time but it would have to be approved on a federal level. The bill that's set to be re-introduced in Connecticut would go into effect if Massachusetts, New York and Rhode Island were on board as well. 

RELATED: Gas prices on the rise in Connecticut and could get even higher

While the time change is seen as a nuisance by many, it is a good time to change the batteries on your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors. The Connecticut Fire Academy also encourages families to go over their home escape plans.

Gaby Molina is a reporter and anchor at FOX61 News. She can be reached at gmolina@fox61.com. Follow her on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

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