Being visible can be life-saving in many work environments. Many people work in areas with heavy traffic and perhaps in low light conditions where the risk of accidents is high. To minimize risks, it is important to be visible clearly and from as far away as possible.
How to protect yourself by being visible enough is clearly regulated by laws and directives. In short, it involves dressing in colors with high visibility (fluorescent) and with reflectors in the right places. It is also important that these clothes are clean and intact so that dirt does not diminish their visibility.
In addition to accidents that may occur if one is not dressed properly, one may also risk being suspended from a workplace. The Swedish Work Environment Authority controls that personal protective measures are taken at workplaces that require warning clothing.
The most common risk environments are work on and around roads, warehouses, and work in darkness. In darkness, fluorescent colors lose their brightness, so it is very important that the garments also have reflectors. Reflectors on the legs make one visible from further away.
The requirements in the EN 20471 and EN 471 standards govern the design and material qualities used in the garments. There are three approved warning colors, yellow, orange, and red. A warning garment must have a certain area of fluorescent and reflective material to achieve high visibility. The larger the area, the higher the visibility class the garment achieves. Class 3 is the highest value.