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Guidelines for Reflective Safety Apparel: Updated 2017

May 7, 2020 2 min read

Guidelines for Reflective Safety Apparel: Updated 2017

Editor's Note: This post was originally published in April 2014 and has since been updated with current reflective safety apparel guidelines.

You might think of vibrant colors and reflective tape when you hear "reflective safety apparel." While we can't disagree, you're missing a key point: this apparel is used to keep your employees safe.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports about 3 million nonfatal workplace injuries and illnesses each year. Many of these injuries occurred on construction sites. In 2016, CareerCast reported that construction is one of the most dangerous fields to work in. As a result, construction laborers have the highest injury rate on the job.

Unfortunately, not all injuries can be prevented. Electricians, roofers, laborers, and other construction workers face a high level of risk each day.

The clothing your employees wear on the job is just as important to their safety as the rest of their protective equipment. OSHA regulations state that protective equipment, including personal protective equipment (PPE), shall be provided by the employer at no cost to employees.

One of the biggest dangers on any job site is visibility. Whether it’s keeping workers safe from traffic or helping them stand out to equipment drivers on-site, high visibility and reflective clothing is important for maintaining the safety of your employees on the job. High visibility jackets, T-shirts, vests, sweatshirts and more can all be incorporated into required workwear that promotes safety.

Similar to corporate logo apparel, safety apparel is available in many different styles and fits. Customized logo features also allow the apparel to align with your brand.

The American National Standards Institute (ANSI) oversees the norms and regulations that guide safety procedures in every sector. They certify certain reflective materials to be better-suited to particular applications than others.

Let’s explore the range of ANSI certified reflective clothing available.

ANSI 107 Class 3 Reflective Clothing

Reflective Safety Clothing ANSI 107 class 3

Who typically wears ANSI 107 Class 3?

  • Roadway construction workers and survey crews
  • Construction vehicle operators
  • Utility workers
  • Railway workers
  • Flagging crews

ANSI 107 Class 2 Reflective Clothing

safety reflective clothing ANSI 107 class 2

Who typically wears ANSI 107 Class 2?

  • Parking and toll gate personnel
  • Crossing guards
  • Law enforcement personnel
  • Roadway construction workers and survey crews
  • Forestry workers

Non-ANSI Color Enhanced Apparel

reflective safety apparel

What is Non-ANSI Color Enhanced Apparel Used For?

  • Anyone who needs to stand out from the crowd
  • Base layer under ANSI certified workwear
  • An added layer of visibility
  • A uniforming option
  • A change of color for lunch periods off the job site

Closing Thoughts

If you're still wondering, how can reflective safety apparel align with my brand when it only comes in bright yellow or orange colors? Don't panic. There are many imprinting options that can still effectively promote your brand's image. Create a unique design that represents your brand.

Reflective safety apparel seems simple - it's bright colors and reflective tape. While this may be true, a lot of thought should go into ordering uniforms for employees. You may know which ANSI style is right for your employees, but that doesn't mean your job is done. It's important to consider comfort, durability, and warmth. You want your employees to be safe, but that doesn't mean they have to be uncomfortable, especially if they're spending the day outside in hot or cold weather.

We know how challenging it can be to order uniforms for employees, particularly when safety is on the line. Providing staff with reflective safety apparel is not just courteous, it's also a regulation. Take the extra step to ensure your employees are safe by ordering the safest apparel.

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This post was originally published April 23, 2014