Reflective Tape for High Visibility

Published: 20th March 2012
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Every garment that required a reflective material must pass the standards that were laid down by the American National Standards institute in 1999. High Visibility clothing is broken down into different specifications ranging from minimum sizes to the quality of the reflective tapes. The ANS put these rules and qualifications in place to reduce the amount of work related injuries and deaths for American workers. Over the years, the rules have been changed and modified as the industry developed. In 1999, the American National Standards Institute introduced standards for garments with reflective tape in an effort to reduce the amount of worksite accidents and deaths for workers in America. These standards have been changed and modified to keep up with new industry developments and needs. High visibility clothing now needs to meet certain qualifications and are put into different categories based on how and where they are used.

Defining Class 2 Standards- To be in the Class 2 category, a garment must be used for a specific purpose. They define safety apparel that is used by police, fire firefighters, construction workers, utility workers, and emergency personnel. These occupations are the primary target, but garments that receive this certification are used in any area where there is traffic exceeding 25 miles per hour or you need to take your attention off the job site around you. Any occasion where high visibility is a main concern.

Garment Size- Class 2 standards define what type of garment the reflective tapes and other material need to be attached to. To stand out against the background environments, the garment must be a bright fluorescent shades. Green/yellow, red/orange or plain fluorescent red are popular choices. The background of the garment does not need to be reflective, but needs to be seen in the daylight. For any vest to meet the Class 2 standard, there must be 775 square inches of fabric.

Reflective Material- There are certain amounts of reflective material you need to have, spacing of the tape, and placement. To meet Class 2 standards if the manufacturer uses 1.375 inch tape, there must be at least 4 yards of the material over the entire garment. If 2 inch wide tape is used, there must be a total of 2.8 yards. There must be a band of reflective material around the torso of the garment to increase all around visibility. Bands of reflective tape must be spaced at two inches apart to allow the background material to be visible in between.

Reflective Performance- To qualify for Class 2, a garment must meet standards of visibility and durability. Reflective tapes or other material must have a visibility level of 2 in Table 5, or a level 1 in Table 6 based on the ANSI 107-2004 standards. Garments also must be tested to hold up against repetitive washing, harsh weather, tensile strength, and abrasion to meet the Class 2 standard

ANSI Certification- All tests on garments with reflective tapes for Class 2 certification are done in a third party laboratory. Once a garment has passed these tests, it will be labeled with the identification marks of the manufacturer, what the products designation is, the type, size, and the instructions of safe wear, use and care. It will also contain the specific ANSI standard qualification and a picture of the class and level of performance.

Where does your business stand on adhering to visibility standards with reflective tape? Don't purchase cheaper high visibility clothing. Trust in manufacturers that use Loxy sew on reflective tape and seam sealing tape for the highest quality work wear and safety gear.

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