For some of us, April showers are just a sign that we will soon be receiving May flowers. But for those of us in occupations that put us outdoors, spring time means messy, sometimes dangerous job sites. If you are outside during the rainy season this year, make sure you are up-to-date on the newest trends and technologies of the American National Standards Institute (ANSI)-standard for your high visibility rain gear.
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Working in high-risk environments such as roadsides or runways (airport, not fashion) doesn’t mean you have to put yourself in harms way. Taking safety precautions such as wearing proper Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), decreases your chances of being hit by a car, or other danger due to low-visibility conditions. Recognized as the industry consensus standard for the performance requirements of high-visibility work wear by both the Occupational Safety and Hazard Administration (OSHA) and the U.S. Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), the ASNI 107 standard should serve as your compass for the minimum safety equipment on the job site.
ANSI 107 breaks down high-visibility apparel into type and performance class. Type corresponds to the environment in which the personnel operates, and performance class is based on the design deemed necessary for the visual needs and level of risk. It is important for personnel of high-risk work environments to pay attention to guidelines set by ANSI 107 because these recommendations were designed by a group of professionals to cover risks which may go unnoticed to the individual. Furthermore, the specific minimum requirements are calculated by professionals looking at the big picture, rather than individuals that can only make an on-site assessment of conditions, sometimes without a baseline to refer to.
The leading producers of high-visibility ANSI 107 standard PPE have been making amazing developments with this safety apparel. What were once bulky vinyl trench coats, are now stylish, comfortable, and multi-functional high-visibility raingear. Some of the most notable advancements in ANSI class raingear are Ripstop 300-denier fabrics, elastic wrist and ankle cuffs, double-taped and heat-sealed seams, drawstring waists, waterproof pockets and zippers, as well as one-way vents for reducing overheating. Today’s ANSI rain apparel is thinner, lighter, stronger and more flexible – making safety and ease of movement better than ever and reducing risk of injuries from snags on equipment or machinery.
Whether you’re working near roadways, at an airport, or as emergency personnel, make sure you are visible and exempt to OSHA fines with new and improved high visibility rain gear.