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Safety Vests Styles And Variations

By Marla Mills

There are many situations in which individuals may be in danger because of not being very visible. There are also circumstances under which people in certain positions need to be quickly distinguished from the crowd. For these times, and others like them, safety vests may offer an additional level of protection by bringing attention to those who wear them.

Available in several attention grabbing fluorescent colors, this type of garment can make a normally unnoticed person stand apart from their surroundings. Some hues, such as the ever popular orange, are used to increase recognition or to denote service position. While the styles and designs may vary quite a bit, there are four basic groups into which each may fall.

The category of Class 2 is the most commonly used type and comes in fluorescent yellow, orange and lime. They are worn over regular shirts or above uniforms and usually bears the name of company or department, making it easy for others to determine who is wearing them. This type is normally used for situations where the weather makes visibility low or where the traffic is high but under 50mph.

They are the standard issue under many circumstances that involve the police, utility workers, emergency response teams and construction units. There are varied styles of the Class 2 including mesh, adjustable, flame retardant and illuminated. Having variation allows them more flexibility to fit the different situations for which they are used.

For even more attention and reflective capabilities, the Class 3 offers certain advantages. This style is worn like a front closure shirt with sleeves of long, half or short lengths. The types of circumstances under which these may be deployed often include high traffic flow at an excess of 50mph and practically no visibility due to extreme weather conditions.

The public safety style is most often used for multiple departments during emergency response situations. Each group will be assigned a particular color which will make them easier to distinguish in hectic or crowded circumstances. Law enforcement is generally given blue, while firemen are designated red, paramedics and EMT teams don green and Department of Transportation crews sport orange.

Economy class models are the simplest in design and the easiest to get hold of, often used for special events. They can be purchased in multiple fluorescent colors, left plain or marked with generic terms like "security" and "staff", then passed out to individuals who are directing traffic, maintaining control, taking tickets or even providing assistance. This is also a popular night time and bad weather choice for motorcyclist to increase their visibility.

To suit a variety of possible circumstances, safety vests are issued in very bright or fluorescent hues that really grab attention. Many styles are made from solid materials to provide more reflective surface and several others are constructed of mesh which allows lighter weight and better air flow. Some are made for more functionality, sporting loops and pockets for tools and pens, and some have designs that are made to quickly rip apart to avoid the wearer becoming trapped if snagged on anything.

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