ANSI Class 2 clothing is required protective apparel that must be worn by workers who are in high risk industries. Each different industry requires special clothing, such as one sees worn by a person on a road construction project. ANSI is an abbreviation for the American National Standards Institute which has this type of clothing in three different classes.
This class 2 covers a wide range of workers in dangerous occupations. These would include people, in addition to road workers, such as fire fighters, utility workers, police and emergency personnel and airport ramp workers. This type of reflexive gear includes rainwear, vests, shirts, safety vestsand other types of outerwear. It must be visible at night or when visibility is limited during the day time.
These garments are very specific regarding the colors that must be used. Reflective materials used must cover a specific amount of the garment and is usually found in a jacket, hood and sleeves. The background color, for contrast, is fluorescent but does not have to be reflective. The main colors used are orange/red, green/yellow or fluorescent red. Emphasis is made that the colors must not blend with the surroundings, where work is being done, or vehicles being used so that the worker can easily be identified.
Garments will also include reflective tape that is at least four yards in length and 1.375 inches wide. The wider the reflective tape, however, the shorter it can be. It is also required that solid reflective bands encircle the girth of the torso. These bands must also be separated by two inch spacing with arm bands running around the arms between elbow and shoulder as well as around the cuff of the sleeve.
Vigorous testing regarding the reflectivity of the materials and the garments is conducted. This testing is quite specific with things such as flexibility, reflection after the garment is washed, resistance to rough wear, cold temperature folding and resistance to rain. This testing is in anticipation of any conditions that might occur when a worker is wearing these garments.
Even more testing is then done by a third party regarding the basic material used in the garment. If it passes all testing, it is labeled, instructions included and packaged. The manufacturers who produce this kind of safety gear must provide certification that they meet all required standards.
The different classes of this gear depend on the occupation involved. Class 2 vests, for example is required for people who work near heavy equipment or in speed zones where traffic exceeds 25 mph. For people who are working where traffic exceeds 50 miles per hour, class 3 gear is required. Anyone who is working in a dangerous occupation must have every protection possible which includes gear that will let others see where they are.
Compared to OSHA, ANSI standards are somewhat different but ANSI Class 2work gear is recognized by workers regarding their safety qualifications. Designed to provide protection against external forces that can sometimes become very dangerous, they meet all the requirements. This safety vests has been found to be especially effective when a worker has been in a dangerous situation and only rescued because of the reflective construction of his or her clothing.