About us: High Visibility Clothing

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Origins

Although we may think of the adoption of high visibility clothing a fairly modern trend, its use began over half a century ago on the Scottish railways. Fluorescent orange jackets, labelled “fire-flies” were were issued to track workers on the Pollokshields to Eglinton Street electrified section in Glasgow and subsequently the trial was extended to other areas including Edinburgh, Aberdeen and Inverness. After gauging feedback from train drivers, high viz clothing was issued to staff on British Rail’s London Midland Region in 1965. The final garment was worn as a jerkin and designed to be visible at half a mile in normal weather conditions. The resultant product was the precursor of modern versions that conform to EN471 and subsequent iterations.

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ISO 20471:2013

This International Standard specifies requirements for high visibility clothing, which is capable of visually signalling the user’s presence. The high visibility clothing is intended to provide conspicuity of the wearer in any light condition when viewed by the operators of vehicles or other mechanised equipment during daylight conditions and under illumination of headlights in the dark. High Visibility clothing has a fluorescent surface, combined with reflective material that meets certification requirements in 3 different classes:

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Class 1: Minimum Level

Minimum level of protection required for any persons working on a private road or to be used in conjunction with a higher classed garment. Must incorporate a minimum of 0.14m² of background material and 0.10m² of retro-reflective material. (2 metres of 5cm wide reflective tape).

Class 2: Intermediate Level

Required for any persons working on or near A and B class roads, also for delivery drivers. Must incorporate a minimum of 0.50m² of background material and 0.13m² of retroreflective material. (2.60 metres of 5cm wide reflective tape).

Class 3: Highest Level

Highest level of protection. Required for any persons working on or near motorways or dual-carriage ways or airports. Must incorporate a minimum of 0.80m² of background material and 0.20m² of retroreflective materials. (4 metres of 5cm wide reflective tape).

 

Click here to see our range of high visibility clothing and workwear

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howsafe hi viz peterborough

Howsafe has been supplying high visibility clothing for four decades and a huge selection of products, most of which can be customised  with the addition of durable heat applied branding. This in-house process is undertaken by our own team to maintain the very highest standards that our customer have come to expect from one of the UK's leading independent suppliers of high visibility clothing.
 

Road Safety: A Blast from the Past!

The Department for Transport have been campaigning for road safety for decades and many of those campaigns have become famous in their own right, perhaps most notably the Green Cross Code Man. This road safety superhero was portrayed by Dave Prowse, whose imposing physique earned him the role of Darth Vader in the original Star Wars trilogy (though the voice of the Sith Lord was provided by James Earl Jones). Other famous faces who have been involved in the campaigns include Doctor Who and Worzel Gummidge star John Pertwee and football legend Kevin Keegan.