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Most of Mexico joins Daylight Saving Time at 2 a.m.

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The clock tower of the Municipal Palace looks over the Plaza Grande early in the morning. Yucatán Magazine file photo

Clocks in Mexico will “spring ahead” by one hour at bedtime today.

Daylight Saving Time in Mexico will officially begin 2 a.m. Sunday, April 3. We lagged the U.S. and Canada in resetting our timepieces by three weeks in 2022.

But starting tomorrow, the time difference will be what we are most used to: An hour behind the East Coast and aligned with Central Time.

We lose an hour in the deal, but we’ll get it back Oct. 30, when we “fall back” to leave DST.

Not every state will follow through. Quintana Roo has opted out because the tourist-dependent state is on a timetable with the Caribbean. Sonora stays on Mountain Standard time all year because that’s what its neighboring trading partner Arizona does as well. Baja California, another border state, does follow DST, but does so on the United States schedule.

Mexico first observed Daylight Saving Time in 1931.

Permanent DST?

Are we near the end of this twice-yearly drill? Lawmakers in the US are proposing to make DST permanent next year under the Sunshine Protection Act. Then Mexico would have to decide how to respond.

For many, that means heading to school and work in the dark in exchange for seeing more daylight later.

“If we go on to permanent Daylight Saving Time, then in the winter months, the sun will not be rising until well later than it currently is – in some places well after 8 a.m.,” said Dr. Lisa Meltzer, a professor of pediatrics with National Jewish Health. “That’s going to make it very difficult for people to wake up and to function.”

The US tried permanent daylight saving time in the early 1970s when Congress passed a law. After two years, it proved unpopular and was repealed.

Data show that changing the time on our clocks brings are significant health and safety risks including vehicle crashes, mood disorders, and increased risk of heart attacks and strokes.

“With our cardiac rhythms and our health, those are certainly impacted when our rhythms get off and when we’re not getting enough sleep,” Dr. Meltzer told CBS News in the US.

As the bill making daylight saving time permanent gains steam, the American Academy of Sleep Medicine agrees with eliminating seasonal time changes, but instead recommends year-round permanent standard time.

If Congress passes the bill and President Biden signs it, it would take effect in 2023.

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