An updated national consensus standard for high-visibility safety apparel from the International Safety Equipment Association (ISEA) now provides criteria and test requirements for garments marked as flame- or water-resistant, and includes service-life guidelines.
The American National Standard for High Visibility Safety Apparel and Headwear (ANSI/ISEA 107-2010) is the authoritative document for the design, performance specifications, and use of high-visibility apparel, including millions of vests, jackets, coveralls, trousers, rainwear and headwear, worn by workers in thousands of road construction, emergency response, forestry and other industrial and business settings.
This second update since ISEA published the first edition in 1999 was developed by ISEA's High Visibility Products Group and approved by key stakeholders representing utility workers, safety professionals, transportation safety experts, testing laboratories and government agencies. Though the revision does not change the long-standing requirements for compliant garments with respect to classification and color, it does address important issues for the wearer related to flame-resistance and use during rainfall.
"In the past decade, the acceptance and use of high-visibility garments have become commonplace in working environments where any kind of vehicular movement is present," said Jim Teigen, chairman of the ISEA High-Visibility Products Group and business manager of OK-1 Manufacturing, Altus, Okla. "Due to this widespread use, garments have evolved to address other needs of workers, such as flame-resistant properties. The inclusion of flame-resistance criteria as an optional feature is in direct response to end-user requests."
Additionally, the update calls attention to the service-life guidelines for high-visibility garments that have been established by the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA). "It is important that the end-user be aware of a high-visibility garment's capability to offer continued protection," Teigen noted. "For this reason, users are encouraged to follow guidelines put forth by the FHWA and manufacturers to ensure that workers are being seen at all times, in all situations."
The 43-page American National Standard for High-Visibility Safety Apparel and Headwear (ANSI/ISEA 107-2010) includes examples of apparel configurations known to meet the standard. The standard can be purchased from ISEA for $62 a copy; discounts are available on bulk orders.