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FYI Guy

Seattle Times news librarian Gene Balk crunches the numbers

Topic: health

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March 9, 2013 at 12:00 PM

Is daylight saving time costing you more than just sleep?

Seattle_-_Carroll's_clock_03

Photo: Joe Mabel/Wikimedia Commons

When we set our clocks ahead tonight, will we be setting back the Seattle-Tacoma area by millions of dollars?  Yes, according to a new study.   The Lost-Hour Economic Index, devised by Chmura Economics & Analytics for SleepBetter.org, indicates that daylight saving time costs our region $4.2 million, or about $1.20 per person.

While “saving” is right there in the name of daylight saving time, a growing body of evidence suggests that setting our clocks ahead actually comes at a heavy cost.  For example, studies have concluded that the loss of sleep and disruption of our internal “body clock” associated with DST causes a spike in automobile accidents and heart attacks.  Other costs include an increase in workplace accidents and “cyberloafing.”

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December 31, 2012 at 6:05 AM

Cigarette city: What are Seattle’s smokiest neighborhoods?

Georgetown is No. 1 (Photo: Joe Mabel via Wikimedia Commons)

Where there’s smoke, there’s … hipsters?

In Seattle, it seems so.  Analysis of consumer spending data reveals that some of the city’s funkiest neighborhoods are also the ones whose residents smoke the most cigarettes. And Georgetown — that crumbling enclave of artists and bohemians just north of Boeing Field — is the smokiest neighborhood of all.  Even though incomes in Georgetown are well below the city average, that doesn’t stop folks there from puffing away more of their paychecks than anybody else in town.  The per capita spending on cigarettes and other tobacco products in Georgetown is the highest in the city — 17 percent above the Seattle average. When Georgetowners run low on cash, the art supplies can wait, but not that pack of American Spirits.

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