American National Standards Institute Safety Apparel Standards

The American National Standards Institute (ANSI) classifies safety apparel into three classes:

  1. Class 1 garments: Class 1 garments are for employees working directly with traffic and moving vehicles that are moving no faster than 25 mph. For example, parking lot attendants, employees working in a warehouse where equipment is present or employees retrieving items from parking lots.
  2. Class 2 garments: Class 2 garments are for employees who are involved in work activities with aggressive weather conditions or conditions more elevated then class 1. For example, forest rangers, construction on a highway with cars going faster than 25 mph, airports attendees and emergency responders.
  3. Class 3 garments: Class 3 garments are for employees who need high visibility and might be involved with extremely hazardous situations. For example, survey crews, towing operators and working in extremely dangerous weather.

ANSI further designates Hi Visibility Apparel into three types:

  1. Type O: Off-Road. A class 1 garment that requires 217 square inches of background material and 155 square inches of reflective material.
  2. Type R: Roadway. A class 2 or 3 garment with 775 or 1240 square inches of background material and 201 or 310 square inches of reflective material.
  3. Type P: Police. A class 2 or 3 garment with less background material than a type R but at least the same amount of reflective material.

What Colors Are Considered Hi-Vis?

ANSI/ISEA standards state that hi-vis colors are fluorescent yellow-green, fluorescent orange-red, and fluorescent red. Workers receive discretion in determining which color works for their particular situations. In no circumstances would black or other dark colors be considered hi-vis. The type of hi-vis chosen is based on risk. Read more about ANSI’s standards for hi-vis apparel here.


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