Reflective vests are an essential item for the correct prevention of occupational hazards in many sectors
The use of high visibility clothing in the workplace is key when it comes to preventing potential work-related traffic accidents. That’s why we must be very clear about when we need to use them and do so correctly.
Standard EN ISO 20471 states that high visibility vests belong to an intermediate level of personal protection and are intended to be seen unambiguously in any situation. Therefore, who should use a reflective vest?
We are talking about workers who run the risk of being run over by a vehicle or mechanical equipment whose driver does not have good visibility. This group includes: road workers and workers in areas where traffic does not exceed 80 km/h, delivery drivers or those who work outdoors in environments of low visibility.
There are different types of vests, for example, the neon high visibility vest enables us to be seen at a distance of 150 metres. It should completely cover the torso and you should ensure that no other items of clothing or objects cover the reflective strips, or the vest won’t do its job.
You should bear in mind that not all vests are suitable and that high visibility clothing should comply with the standard and characteristics contained within it. Vests can be yellow, orange or red, and should combine fluorescent material with strips of retroreflective material. The minimum amount of fluorescent background material must be 0.5 m² and the retroreflective part should be 0.13 m². In other words, it must incorporate a reflective band of 2.6 metres in length by 5 centimetres in width. It is also important to be aware of the fact that high visibility clothing should be used both day and night, even on very sunny days. Even in these conditions, it is possible for situations to arise where we can’t be seen and we risk being run over.