A quick overview of High Visibility (HiVis) Clothing Standards for Workers

illustration representing high visibility apparel guidelines

The facts about high visibility safety apparel

Level of protection will not be affected and your current inventory will not be compromised. Please be assured your ANSI/ISEA 107-2010 garment will still provide protection and visibility at least equal to those certified to ANSI/ISEA 107-2015. Changes in the revised standard primarily affect categorization and labeling, NOT protection. The ANSI/ISEA 107-2015 Standard provides criteria for materials, test procedures, design, labeling, and care instructions used in the manufacturing of high visibility apparel. This includes shirts, vests, sweatshirts, jackets, and rainwear.

Five Facts About High Visibility Safety Standards (ANSI/ISEA 107-2015)

  1. The addition of three new garment types creates a wider range of protection to address more hazards:
    • c Type O for Off Road Use (Class 1)
    • c Type R for Roadway Use (Class 2 and Class 3)
    • c Type P for Public Safety (Class 2 and Class 3)
  2. ANSI 207 merges with ANSI 107-2015 creating HVSAStandard
    Creating the new garment types has allowed ANSI/ISEA 207 to
    merge with 107 under Type P-Public Safety. Type P garments now
    include provisions for two performance classes: Class 2 and Class 3.
  3. A smaller size vest is now allowed to fit smaller body frames better without compromising protection.
    • c Type R Class 2 for smallest size offered decreases from
      775 square inches to 540 square inches.
    • c Type R Class 3 for smallest size offered decrease from
      1240 to 1000 square inches.
  4. Self-extinguishing FR labeling changes
    ANSI/ISEA 107-2015 rated garments made from polyester or any non-inherently flame-resistant fabric will require the following statement on the label: This garment is not flame-resistant as defined by ANSI/ISEA 107-2015 Section 10.5.
  5. Balance of design and logo allowances
    The new revision for balance requirement insures that the protective properties of HVSA are not compromised by design or style objectives. To ensure color blocking or other design criteria do not reduce the protection from any one direction, HVSA garments must have at least 40% of the minimum required amount of both background material and reflective tape on the back of the garment. Logo allowances have been incorporated into the standard providing allowance for adding a company’s logo without being required to deduct the background area of the logo. This new edition consolidates the requirements of ANSI/ISEA 107-2010 and ANSI/ISEA 207, American National Standard for Public Safety Vests in an effort to establish a single, comprehensive document that considers all occupational tasks.

    While the standard continues to present three performance classes of garments based on the amount of visible materials and design attributes incorporated into the final configuration, it also identifies garment types based on expected use settings and work activities being performed. These are designated as:

    • off-road (Type O)
    • roadway and temporary traffic control (Type R)
    • or public safety activities (Type P).

    ANSI/ISEA 107-2015 is the latest revision of a voluntary industry consensus standard that was first published in 1999 and revised in 2004 and 2010. Prior to its initial publication there was no regulation or guideline for the design, performance or materials for high visibility PPE in the United States. Since 1999, the standard has been recognized by federal, state and local authorities as well as private industry. Current US Department of Transportation, Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) regulations have required workers on or near Federal-aid highways to wear Class 2 or Class 3 garments, and the 2009 revision to the Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices (MUTCD) extends this provision to workers on all roadways in the United States. 

    The need to be seen is recognized as a critical issue for worker safety. Low visibility is a serious hazard for all workers who must perform tasks near moving vehicles or equipment. Workers must be visible to vehicle operators in all lighting conditions and against complex environmental backgrounds. The sooner a vehicle operator sees a pedestrian worker, the longer the operator has to avoid an incident. High visibility safety apparel and accessories dramatically enhance worker visibility.

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