PM urged to keep continental time

Prime Minister David Cameron has been urged by road safety and motoring organisations to support an initiative keeping British clocks on continental time in order to avoid road accidents.

A Private Member's Bill, calling for a review of proof to support a test of "European time" for the UK, tabled by Conservative MP Rebecca Harris, is to go before the House of Commons on December 3.

Various groups such asRoyal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA) and RAC have written to Mr Cameron asking him to back the move to change clocks.

According to the organisations, an extra hour of daylight in the evening will bring down the number of road accidents.

The signatories of the letter are part of the Lighter Later coalition, which consists of tourism firms, environmentalists, public health specialists, businesses and community charities.

The change will mean however, that the UK will see darker mornings, especially in Scotland, as a result of being more west and north than the rest of Europe.

From 1968 to 1971, the UK was made to stay on British Summer Time (BST) for the whole year as part of a three-year trial. However, the initiative was not widely accepted and the country went back to the Greenwich Mean Time and BST system again from 1971 onwards.

Tom Mullarkey, chief executive,RoSPA, said that by putting the UK on European time, up to 80 deaths and 200 serious injuries on the country's roads a year could be prevented.

He said: "At a time of great financial uncertainty, changing the clocks would offer a unique opportunity to save lives, improve well-being and boost the economy. We only hope that our parliamentary representatives now help to turn this universally appealing idea into a reality."

Daniel Vockins, campaign manager, said: "We would still put the clocks forward in spring and back in autumn, but we would have moved an hour of daylight from the morning to the evening."

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