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Change your clocks and batteries Sunday

At 2 a.m. Sunday, Daylight Saving Time will end and people will turn their clocks back one hour.
With less daylight hours, AAA Mid-Atlantic is reminding drivers of the challenges of driving at night.
"As Sunday arrives, the first day of standard time, and when motorists return to their daily commuting schedule on Monday, they will experience shorter days, longer nights and darkness settling in earlier than they have been used to for the last seven months," Ragina C. Averella, a AAA spokeswoman said in a prepared release.
"We're reminding motorists of the potential driving hazards that low light or dark conditions bring especially as dusk falls."
Traffic death rates are tripled at night, according to the National Safety Council.
A driver's depth perception, color recognition and peripheral vision are compromised at night, according to AAA Mid-Atlantic.
Visibility accounts for 90 percent of a driver's reaction, according to the National Safety Council.
The night hours also present dangers to pedestrians.
In 2011, 68 percent of pedestrian fatalities throughout the country happened at night between 6 p.m. and 5:59 a.m., according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
In Maryland in 2011, 68 percent of pedestrian fatalities occurred at night, according to the Maryland Motor Vehicle Administration.
"Pedestrians need to remember that motorists may not always see them at night or in the morning and late afternoon as motorists fight sun glare," Averella said. "Pedestrians need to do their part by practicing safety guidelines that will help ensure motorists can see them."
The end of Daylight Saving Time is also a good opportunity to change the batteries in smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors, said Bruce Bouch, director of public education for the Office of the Maryland State Fire Marshal.
"The importance and value of making sure smoke alarms are working are paramount in the fact that they are the early notification when smoke is rising from an unwanted fire in your home," Bouch said.
The state fire marshal is urging Marylanders to change their batteries along with their clocks.
Effective July 1, a new law made it mandatory for residential properties in the state to use long-life sealed lithium battery alarms after current battery-only smoke alarms reach their 10-year life span.
Thirty-eight percent of fatal fire injuries occur in homes without working smoke alarms, according to a news release from Energizer, which also runs a Change your Battery program.
"That is your first line of defense and you need every second available to escape the effects of fire," Bouch said.

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