Friday 13th coincides with a full moon – and it could be more dangerous than you think

Not only is it Friday 13th, but it is also a Full Moon and the last time this event occurred was 13 October 2000

If you're a selenophobic or a friggatriskaidekaphobic it might just be best to stay in bed.

For the first time in over a decade two of the great Western superstitions will combine bringing potentially a double dose of dire luck.

Not only is it Friday 13th, but it is also a Full Moon. The last time this event occurred was in Oct. 13, 2000.

Throw into the mix factors such as late licencing for the World Cup and soaring temperatures, and the more nervous among readers may just choose to stay under the covers and avoid the potential carnage.

But why is Friday the 13th considered unlucky, and what's the truth behind the superstition? And what of the Full Moon? Why do we fear it so much and does it really affect our behaviour?

Origins of the myth...

The origins of the idea that Friday the 13th is unlucky are unclear.

Some have suggested that it relates to the fact that the number twelve is considered the number of chronological completeness: the twelve Apostles of Jesus, twelve months in a year, twelve hours of the clock day etc.

Thirteen is therefore considered irregular and incomplete.

Other theories suggest the unlucky myth derives from the Last Supper.

In Norse mythology having thirteen people around a table is considered unlucky and indicates that one of them will die.

Dan Brown's novel The Da Vinci Code suggested a link between Friday the 13th and the Knights Templar.

Oddly Fridays on their own are considered unlucky.

The fact that Christians commemorate the crucifixion of Jesus on the Friday before Easter adds to the idea that Fridays are unlucky days.

In other biblical origins Eve is believed to have tempted Adam with the forbidden fruit on this day.

Traditionally it was also the day that prisoners were hanged in Britain before the abolition of the death penalty.

So is the day really unlucky?

Apocryphally staff in hospital emergency departments will sometimes refuse to work on this particular date.

A study published in the British Medical Journal in the 1990s noted that the number of motor accidents in the South West Thames region increased from a total of 45 on six Friday 6ths between 1989 and 1992, to 65 accidents on the six Friday 13ths in the same period.

This showed a marked increase of 52% in the number of accidents.

Another study by The Dutch Centre for Insurance Statistics (CVS) concluded, however, in 2008 that "fewer accidents and reports of fire and theft occur when the 13th of the month falls on a Friday than on other Fridays, because people are preventively more careful or just stay home. "

"Statistically speaking, driving is slightly safer on Friday the 13th."

Despite the fact that statistically the day has little influence on whether you're in an accident or not - the myth still has a huge impact.

The Stress Management Center and Phobia Institute in Asheville, North Carolina, an estimated 17 to 21 million people in the United States are affected by a fear of Friday 13th.

It is estimated that it costs the American economy approximately $800- $900 million (£500 million- £570 million) because people won't travel on the day.

So, what of the full moon?

Some theories suggest that the moon influences our behaviour in the same way in which it affects the tide. It exerts influence on the water in our bodies through gravitational pull.

Others have suggested that it's the light of the moon that has influence. One study found an alarming increase in the number of animal bites on a full moon.

So prevalent is the idea that the moon makes people behave in a bizarre way (hence the term lunacy) that in 2007 extra police were called in to patrol the streets of Brighton when the moon is full.

Research by Sussex police concluded there was a rise in the number of violent offences that take place when the moon is full.

Police compared crime statistics for Brighton and Hove with lunar graphs to discover the trend.

Police officers or staff in hospital emergency departments insist there are more accidents, violent incidents and psychiatric admissions on a full moon.

Other studies have shown that people rated their sleep as 15 per cent lower on a full moon.

In 1985 US psychologists James Rotton and Ivan Kelly, however, combined the findings of 37 studies and concluded the full moon played no part in the number of psychiatric admissions, murders, car accidents, suicides and crimes.

They found some small correlations between the death and incidents but were able in lots of instances to explain the spike through analysing other events on that date.

Given that this June Friday the 13th falls on a full moon, but also during the World Cup, and with extended opening hours (both of which are likely to affect the numbers of arrests and accidents), correlations between the date and the lunar activity and unfortunate events are unlikely to be put to bed any time soon.

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebookA unique anthology of reporting and analysis of a crucial period of history
Sport
Laura Trott with her gold
Commonwealth Games
Arts and Entertainment
Gal Gadot as Wonder Woman
film
News
Bryan had a bracelet given to him by his late father stolen during the raid
people
Sport
France striker Loic Remy
sportThe QPR striker flew to Boston earlier in the week to complete deal
Extras
indybestSpice up your knife with our selection of delicious toppings
Independent
Travel Shop
the manor
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on city breaks Find out more
santorini
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on chic beach resorts Find out more
sardina foodie
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on country retreats Find out more
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

SQL DBA (2005/2008/2012, projects, storage requirements)

£45000 - £50000 Per Annum + excellent benefits package: Clearwater People Solu...

Copywriter - Corporate clients - Wimbledon

£21000 - £23000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Copywriter - London As a Copywrite...

Horticulture Lecturer / Tutor / Assessor - Derbyshire

£15 - £18 per hour: Randstad Education Nottingham: As a result of our successf...

Retail Lecturer / Assessor / Tutor - Derbyshire

£15 - £18 per hour: Randstad Education Nottingham: Randstad Education are succ...

Day In a Page

A new Russian revolution: Cracks start to appear in Putin’s Kremlin power bloc

A new Russian revolution

Cracks start to appear in Putin’s Kremlin power bloc
Eugene de Kock: Apartheid’s sadistic killer that his country cannot forgive

Apartheid’s sadistic killer that his country cannot forgive

The debate rages in South Africa over whether Eugene de Kock should ever be released from jail
Standing my ground: If sitting is bad for your health, what happens when you stay on your feet for a whole month?

Standing my ground

If sitting is bad for your health, what happens when you stay on your feet for a whole month?
Commonwealth Games 2014: Dai Greene prays for chance to rebuild after injury agony

Greene prays for chance to rebuild after injury agony

Welsh hurdler was World, European and Commonwealth champion, but then the injuries crept in
Israel-Gaza conflict: Secret report helps Israelis to hide facts

Patrick Cockburn: Secret report helps Israel to hide facts

The slickness of Israel's spokesmen is rooted in directions set down by pollster Frank Luntz
The man who dared to go on holiday

The man who dared to go on holiday

New York's mayor has taken a vacation - in a nation that has still to enforce paid leave, it caused quite a stir, reports Rupert Cornwell
Best comedians: How the professionals go about their funny business, from Sarah Millican to Marcus Brigstocke

Best comedians: How the professionals go about their funny business

For all those wanting to know how stand-ups keep standing, here are some of the best moments
The Guest List 2014: Forget the Man Booker longlist, Literary Editor Katy Guest offers her alternative picks

The Guest List 2014

Forget the Man Booker longlist, Literary Editor Katy Guest offers her alternative picks
Jokes on Hollywood: 'With comedy film audiences shrinking, it’s time to move on'

Jokes on Hollywood

With comedy film audiences shrinking, it’s time to move on
It's the best of British art... but not all is on display

It's the best of British art... but not all is on display

Voted for by the British public, the artworks on Art Everywhere posters may be the only place where they can be seen
Critic claims 'I was the inspiration for Blanche DuBois'

Critic claims 'I was the inspiration for Blanche DuBois'

Blanche Marvin reveals how Tennessee Williams used her name and an off-the-cuff remark to create an iconic character
Sometimes it's hard to be a literary novelist

Sometimes it's hard to be a literary novelist

Websites offering your ebooks for nothing is only the latest disrespect the modern writer is subjected to, says DJ Taylor
Edinburgh Fringe 2014: The comedy highlights, from Bridget Christie to Jack Dee

Edinburgh Fringe 2014

The comedy highlights, from Bridget Christie to Jack Dee
Dame Jenny Abramsky: 'We have to rethink. If not, museums and parks will close'

Dame Jenny Abramsky: 'We have to rethink. If not, museums and parks will close'

The woman stepping down as chair of the Heritage Lottery Fund is worried