When Must Hi Vis Workwear be Worn?

Hi-vis workwear is clothing that features a fluorescent yellow or orange finish. It is designed to be easy to see in conditions where lighting is limited and not being seen would cause a threat to the worker themselves and/or those around them. There are a number of regulations in place to ensure that high visibility workwear is worn at the correct times and there are three classes of high visibility workwear ranging from 1-3, which define the exact requirements. Here we outline the basics and explain when it needs to be worn.

  • High visibility policy

If the company you work for has a high visibility policy, it is your employer's responsibility to provide a high visibility uniform. You will need to consult your HR representative or manager for full clarification if there is not a written handbook or uniform provided. If you damage or lose your uniform you may be responsible for replacing it yourself with something similar.

  • Construction near to vehicles

Construction jobs generally require high visibility clothing to minimise the risks of accidents occurring on-site. Dating the daytime fluorescent clothing is sufficient but any work carried out in the dark, such as in the evening in winter when it gets dark early or at night must be carried out in retro-reflective clothing that reflects light sources such as headlights. Depending on the job, company and circumstances a vest or jacket worn over everyday wear may suffice.

  • Public construction

Full high visibility clothing that glows in the dark is required. Head-to-toe clothing such as trousers and a jacket is required.

  • Marshals and traffic patrol

Other people working around vehicles, such as lollipop men and women near school crossing patrols, are also required to wear hi-vis clothing.

  • Warehouses

In warehouses or in manufacturing and storage environments where forklifts are in use, hi-vis jackets are required.


What next?

If you're unsure about your responsibilities in terms of high visibility clothing, you should consult your manager. If you own a business or are in a Project Management position, you can attend a PPE course to get up to speed.

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