Children’s safety is the utmost importance, and is the highest priority when teachers and parents escort large groups of excited children on an excursion. High-visibility clothing is one of the most effective ways to ensure their safety and provide peace of mind for those responsible.
But how much do you really know about children’s hi vis vests? This article will educate parents and teachers of everything they should know about high-visibility clothing, and its important when responsible for groups of children.
The European Standard
As recently as 2013, the European Standard for high visibility clothing was updated. The new ISO EN 20471 Standard has three separate classes that denote the degree of visibility.
Class 1 – lowest level of visibility is applicable to trousers with two 5 cm reflective bands around each leg. These trousers become Class 3 when worn with a Class 3 jacket.
Class 2 – intermediary level of visibility, and is generally considered to be the level used for vests. The vests will feature two 5 cm reflective bands around the body, or one 5 cm band around the body and braces on both shoulders.
Class 3 – highest level of visibility. Class 3 high-visibility clothing will feature two 5 cm bands of reflective tape around the body, arms and shoulders.
When deciding on the most appropriate high-visibility clothing for children, it’s always advisable to know just which Class is right for your needs.
"High visibility jackets have evolved over the subsequent decades, and today are essential safety clothing for a wealth of different environments."
Hi Vi Clothing is 50 Years Old
The first high visibility jackets came to the UK in 1964 where they were tested by railway maintenance workers in Glasgow.
Following the 1974 Health and Safety at Work Act and the 1992 Personal Protective Equipment at Work Act, regulations were passed to protect employees from any potential hazards. Since then the high vis jacket has become the standard in identifiable safety clothing.
High visibility jackets have evolved over the subsequent decades, and today are essential safety clothing for a wealth of different environments. Made from 100% polyester with a Velcro fastening, hi-visibility vests keep kids safely visible, whilst being light and easy-to-wear.
High-Vis Clothing Saves Lives
High visibility vests stand out. In fact, studies have found that wearers are so conspicuous that wearers can be identified three seconds before those without vests.
Children’s high vis vests are extremely important when navigating a potentially hazardous area. When teachers are escorting children on a class field trip, these vests make sure that children can be easily spotted should they wander off from the group and find themselves in a hazardous situation.
Their Different Colours
Kids can choose from a wealth of different high vis coloured jackets. Each colour is typically used for a different purpose. When out at sea, high vis for kid’s vests are orange because the colour has the sharpest contrast against blue and grey.
Alternatively, horse-riding kid’s high vis jackets are traditionally pink as the colour is not found in an abundance in nature and creates a stark contrast against many landscapes.
Yellow is, however, the most common colour as it has the greatest contrast across the most varied environments, and as such is the colour most commonly associated with high visibility vests for children.
Superior Visibility in the Morning
Fluorescent children’s high vis jackets are perfect for daytime excursions. Florescent colours appear very bright because of the way that they absorb and emit different types of light.
This is especially important in poor daytime conditions. Fluorescent coloured vests are required when taking children on excursions on a misty morning, or overcast day.
Superior Visibility in the Afternoon
Reflective materials are most commonly used in hi vis vests as the qualities of these materials allow for light to bounce off the reflective material. The benefit of wearing these jackets when light is fading is that children can be easily identified, regardless of poor visibility.
The main point to remember is ‘florescent for morning, reflective for afternoon.’
"The most popular high vis for kid’s vest design features a glass beard tape with a plastic vinyl material."
Different Types of Reflective Materials
The most popular high vis for kid’s vest design features a glass beard tape with a plastic vinyl material. The design features a prism shape that bounces light straight back to the source. This is known as micro prismatic retro-reflective tape.
In addition, vests can also be designed with simple silver and grey reflective bands on a plain yellow jacket. When light touches the vest, they reflect a bright white light, making them impossible not to distinguish – a characteristic that will always keep children safe.
High Visibility Jackets are Surprisingly Affordable
You can’t put a price on your children’s safety. However, you may be surprised to learn just how affordable children’s high vis vests are.
A basic Class 1 jacket is generally priced at a mere few pounds. All schools work to budgetary restrictions, but given their affordability, hi-vis clothing will hardly break the bank.
High vis vests are ideal for keeping children safe. With a comfortable lightweight design and striking appearance, it’s no surprise that they’ve been the leading children’s safety garment for decades.
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