The Lifespan of High Visibility apparel
High visibility clothing usually lasts for an average of six months. Though its lifespan may vary depending upon the usage and handling of the vests and jackets. If the vests and jackets are subjected to rough and harsh conditions daily it lasts up to 6 months. On the contrary, if the vests and jackets are used under much lighter conditions and are not worn on daily basis then these vests and jackets can last for more than a year and this again depends on the handling of the owner. These vests and jackets are washable and can be reused after washing by keeping a sufficient time interval so that their sturdy and tough properties can be used as efficiently as possible to minimize the washing care and maintenance of these vests and jackets. This apparel can be washed about 25 times maximum. Lesser frequent washing is advised to preserve the reflective strips as the reflective materials start fading because of frequent washing. The fading of the reflective surface decreases the efficiency of the apparel and hence it will be of no use after losing its reflective properties.
When to wash the apparel:
- When the apparel’s color becomes dull.
- When the fabric gets faded or is damaged due to rough usage.
- When the apparel loses comfort and the person wearing it feels uneasy to wear.
- When the apparel becomes very dirty.
Few tips for increasing the lifespan of the apparel:
- Wash the apparel only when extremely dirty.
- Regularly wipe off the dust on it, especially the reflective surface.
- Exposure to strong lighting such as sunlight should be avoided as it damages the reflective surface.
- Store the apparel by using a hanger or by folding it gently as any creasing on the reflective surface will damage the reflective surface.
- Store it in a cool and dry place preferably a wardrobe or a suitcase to avoid any mistake of spilling any liquid that can leave a permanent mark on it or anything that can spoil the fabric.
The High Visibility vests and jackets are cheap yet effective and are very useful for the safety of the workers and public.
In particular, you should replace clothing that is:
- Dirty or soiled
- Excessively worn
- Not visible from 1,000 feet during the day or night
To prolong the life of your high-visibility garments, be sure to maintain and clean the equipment after each use. Store it properly and inspect it on a regular basis to identify any potential problems early. If you have any doubts about the effectiveness of your hi-vis gear, do not wear it and talk to a safety supervisor to have it replaced.
There is the special color-coding of these uppers, jackets, and vests and they are available mainly in these colors:
- Fluorescent yellow/lime
- Fluorescent orange
- Fluorescent red
Other than the above-mentioned colors, high visibility vests and jackets are also available in various colors such as blue, black, and/or pink. After various major researches and experiments performed by the experts, it was found that the colors red, yellow, and orange are more effective as well as reflective for the usage under high visibility vests and jackets. The colors blue, black, and pink were found to be less reflective hence lesser visible because of being at the darker and lesser refractive edge of the VIBGYOR and were therefore considered less useful and got lesser safety rating, so they are not used by professionals and are solely used for the personal purpose that too under controlled or supervised environment.
The color fluorescent yellow reflects almost 70% of the light falling on the reflective surface hence making it much brighter and easily visible from a long distance and also makes the contrast with the surrounding objects, walls, vehicles, and other people who are not a part of the worker’s association. This color also strikes out of the colors of the equipment used by the personnel such as orange cones for diversion of the traffic or the barriers used to prohibit the entrance of unauthorized people. This color is given to the workers whose job is just to divert the traffic or to check the entrance of the authorized people only. It signifies that the persona is looking after the boundaries of the site of work and is a security guard of the site.
The color fluorescent orange is a very commonly used color. This color can be easily seen from far places as it reflects nearly about 80% of the light falling on its reflecting surface. This color is worn by the person whose work involves much movement such as moving fragile or hazardous materials from one place to another and usually those items are loaded on open carriages and these people are around it to take extra precautions in case there is any casualty regarding the handling and movement of the items to be shipped or shifted.
The color fluorescent red is the recently added color in the Hi-Vis clothing sector. Red color itself being a symbol of Danger and Caution is used for heavily guarded areas that are under a metropolitan with a huge surrounding population but still a classified place with heavy security entrances.