The Importance of Having High-Visibility Clothing in the Workplace

Several careers and industries have dangers to consider when workers cannot be seen on the job site. Construction is one of the most dangerous, experiencing more workplace fatality incidents than any other in 2020.

Although workers have no influence on the choices of others, there are some ways that they can control the controllable. That includes investing in high-visibility clothing and workwear. Workers with hi-vis rain jackets, pants, hats, and helmets are easier to see in potentially dangerous circumstances.

Visibility is only one benefit to consider when investing in hi-vis apparel. Here are some of the other reasons why this option makes sense.

1. Fewer Accidents Occur

High-visibility clothing reduces the risk factors for individual workers and accidents. Although safety apparel doesn't prevent every situation, many items offer a protective quality that people don't receive when wearing "regular" shirts, pants, and shoes.

Workers can approach each job more confidently when feeling safer and more protected. This benefit delivers more productivity and improves morale. Projects can be completed more efficiently, ensuring deadlines are met while working conditions improve.

2. Easier to Recognize

When workers have a hi-vis hat, coat, vest, and pant options to wear on public job sites, they're easier to see from a distance. This benefit isn't negated by poor conditions or nighttime hours because the material is bright and reflective.

Although safety apparel won't stop every accident, this investment does make it easier for drivers and others to spot workers where impacts could occur.

When drivers see construction workers wearing high-visibility clothing, it can keep them safer because they recognize that road conditions are changing.

3. Weather Protection

Have you ever stood outside on a cold day without gloves or mittens on your hands? Did you blow into them to keep them warm?

When people work in uncomfortable conditions, they tend to focus on how they feel more than the job they've been assigned. Today's best high-visibility clothing keeps people warm while helping others recognize that someone is outside trying to complete a project.

Poor weather conditions make it harder for employees on a construction site to see their co-workers. A high-visibility hat or helmet can protect from falling objects while being color-coded to communicate the worker's role on the site.

4. Several Product Solutions

The options in the high-visibility worker apparel category are plentiful today. In the past, workers had access to simple vests, hard hats, and some accessories.

Today, it is possible to purchase almost any apparel option with this feature for workers and others who require more visibility. Companies and individual workers will find high-visibility clothing, high-visibility vests, high-visibility jackets, hi-vis rain jackets, high-visibility pants, high-visibility hats, and hi-vis hard hats – and that list isn't extensive.

If you're a construction worker or serve your community as a general contractor, you'll find that today's high-visibility apparel proactively works to stop tomorrow's accidents while keeping costs affordable.

From a business perspective, investing in this protective gear is better than having worker's compensation claims and short shifts that put you behind schedule.

5. Fast Identification

High-visibility clothing is crucial for emergencies when they arise at any job site. Most manufacturing and construction industry positions have hazard exposures on some level, whether from chemicals, equipment, or falls.

When something unexpected happens, it helps to have everyone wearing hi-vis apparel to ensure no one is missing.

Imagine having a commercial building catch on fire during its construction. If workers are in high-visibility items, the first responders coming to the scene can identify people and potentially initiate a rescue.

This benefit is available even in dark buildings. You can also use different colors or types of high-visibility clothing to identify specific positions, such as the foreman, for faster recognition when briefings are needed.

6. ANSI-Approved Gear

Today's best high-visibility clothing is approved by the American National Standards Institute, or ANSI. This agency was created to help set safety standards for the modern workplace.

When you review today's best workplace apparel with high-visibility features, you'll see that there are three different classes available for clothing.

  • Class 1 (Type O). This hi-vis apparel offers minimum visibility materials to differentiate workers from their environments. It's considered appropriate for off-road environments, but would not be suitable for job sites where traffic movements occur.
  • Class 2 (Type R or P). ANSI considers this option the minimum protection level for workers who require roadway access or operate in temporary traffic control zones. These garments have more hi-vis materials to make it easier for others to see that humans are out there.
  • Class 3 (Type R or P). Additional visibility is available to the wearer with this option, even in complex backgrounds or environments. Workers receive a full range of movement with the apparel while the combined retroreflective performance works to provide safety.

High-visibility apparel doesn't meet the requirements of the different class standards when someone wears them alone. If you wear a Class E item with a Class 2 or a Class 3 garment, the overall classification for the entire outfit typically qualifies as Class 3.

Enhanced visibility items are different from hi-vis apparel. These products do not have an ANSI rating, meaning the benefits listed in this guide differ from what you'd otherwise receive.

Now Is the Time to Buy High-Visibility Clothing

Hi-vis clothing is one of the fastest and most affordable ways to increase workplace safety. When you create a culture that emphasizes visibility through protective apparel, each worker is more likely to safely make it to the end of their shift.

The goal of high-visibility clothing is simple. It makes each person more visible, protecting them from potentially dangerous situations.

Our team provides a wide range of high-visibility clothing, including vests, coats, hi-vis rain jackets, pants, hats, and hi-vis hard hats, with appropriate ANSI ratings to ensure your goals are met. Please reach out to one of our friendly representatives at your convenience to discuss suitable options for your setting or to get answers to any questions you may have.

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