As we’ve got 55% off our Hi-Vis Flexothane Jacket, we thought now might be a good time to re-visit a previous blog we have posted about how to make sure you get the right safety gear. Here is just a snippet to guide you through safety rating for Hi-Vis as Personal Protective Equipment
What is EN471?
EN471 is the European safety standard that deals with high visibility clothing. Hi-Vis clothing should be worn to alert people when someone is working in a potentially hazardous environment, such as in bad weather or along the road side. There are 3 classes of protection depending on the perceived danger or threat of accident. For example, high speed traffic will take longer to stop so the more visible you are, the quicker the vehicle can start to brake and reduce the risk of accident or injury.
Employers must ensure they provide suitable Hi-Vis clothing that meets the minimum safety standards. Employees should also take responsibility for their own safety, including taking proper care of issued garments.
Class 1 – The Minimum Visibility Level
Suitable for off road, such as transport depots
Waistcoats, tabards, and overalls without sleeves can be worn, and should have one band of reflective tape around the body.
Class 2 – Intermediate Visibility Level
Suitable for roadside where the speed is less than 40 miles per hour
Waistcoats, tabards, and overalls without sleeves can be worn, but should have two bands of reflective tape around the body, or one 5cm band around the body and one band over each shoulder.
Class 3 – Highest Visibility Level
Suitable for all roads where the speed exceeds 40 miles per hour and airport runways etc.
Garments must have sleeves, so coats, jackets and overalls can be worn, and should have two bands of reflective tape around the body, two bands on the arms and bands over both shoulders. Ideally trousers should have two reflective bands around the leg (if your jacket is size small or XS you must also wear Hi-Vis trousers as there is not enough total reflective banding on the jackets alone to meet the safety requirements).
How to check for safety standards
If a garment has been certified to European safety standards it will have an EN471 label, and the CE mark. The label will also identify which class (1, 2 or 3) the garment has been certified to. Some garments may have an American safety rating (ANSI), but these cannot be worn as PPE in the UK unless they have also undergone the European tests and have been given a CE mark.
When buying Hi-Vis garments for PPE, once you have checked for the EN471 and CE mark, you should also check that the garments meets any other requirements you might have such as waterproof or water-resistant. It is also important that you get the right size –if they are going to be worn over your uniform and other kit or amour, make sure you are wearing them when you try on your Hi-Vis garments.
Whilst dirt can diminish the effect of a Hi-Vis garment, so can repeated washing. It is essential that the washing care instructions on each garment are followed to make sure that the fabric and reflective strips stay in the best condition.
For More Information
If you are not sure what type of Hi-Vis clothing you need, check what type of environments and conditions you will be working in. If you are still unsure you can contact the Health and Safety Executive who can provide advice and help you find the information you need.
Other Hi-Vis Offers
CG205 Hi-Vis jacket is 50% off
BIKE001.1 Hi-Vis 5-in-1 Cycle Jacket is 50% off
CG014.Y Hi-Vis Flexothane Over Trousers are 50% off