Are you wearing a safety vest?
This blog will discuss the use of safety vests and how they protect not only workers, but bike riders, joggers, scooter riders and many others from accidents caused by low visibility.
The key purpose of wearing a safety vest is to avoid the often deadly consequences of low visibility. According to ANSI standards, anyone working along a federally funded highway should be wearing a hi-viz lime or orange vest that meets at least Class 2 standards. ANSI Class 2 safety vests are designed for wearers exposed to traffic that exceeds 25 miles per hour. These vests can also provide the visibility necessary during inclement weather. There are Class 1 safety vests, but most people require protection higher than that of a Class 1 safety vest. A class I vest is for a parking attendant, warehouse personnel, someone who retrieves shopping carts from parking lots or anyone exposed to vehicles moving less than 25 miles per hour. A class I safety vest does not provide sufficient visibility for the majority of workers who are required by ANSI to wear a hi-viz vest.
Class 3 safety vests provide the highest level of high visibility. These vests have short sleeves and are designed for workers who face serious hazards or whose task load requires a shift of attention away from their work. Class 3 vests are vital for workers who deal with traffic that exceeds speeds of 50 miles per hour, and who work in all manner of weather. People who wear ANSI class III vests include utility repair crews, emergency service workers and more.
Another issue often unaddressed is that of personal safety outside the workplace. The economy and high gas prices have caused the percentage of those who commute by scooter to rise exponentially. Often, those who ride scooters do not take their own safety seriously. Scooter deaths and injuries have risen dramatically in the past decade and are often caused by riders being struck by other vehicles. Many of these accidents may have been prevented if the rider had been wearing a safety vest.
Motorcycle riders, bike riders and joggers pose the same issue with safety and low visibility. Are you taking your own safety seriously by wearing a safety vest?
There are many uses for safety vests, both on and off the work site. Safety vests are vital pieces of protective equipment and often cost only a few dollars! Take safety and visibility seriously!