Why Hi-Visibility clothing is important to your safety on site
High visibility clothing or hi-vis is a widely accepted and crucial part of the personal protective equipment that workers have to wear to alert others of their presence on a job site.
Wearing hi-vis workwear in Melbourne is important if you work on a construction site or any industry where your safety might be at risk or you may not be visible enough. If working in a low visibility area or around moving vehicles or heavy machinery – such as cars, trucks, backhoes or forklifts, hi-vis clothing will increase the wearer’s visibility in a dark or low visibility surroundings.
Hi-Vis apparels are made using bright colours and reflective materials so that you are seen more clearly against any background. In case of emergency, first responders and rescue personnel can spot you easily.
It’s the Law
Workers working on construction sites in Australia are required, by law, to wear hi-vis shirts. The employer must provide hi-vis clothing and other PPE to their employees and the workers can’t refuse to wear it. You are legally required to follow your employer’s safety guidelines – especially if wearing the PPE is instructed by your employer.
Is it only for Construction Workers?
Hi-Vis workwear can be worn by the construction site workers as well as traffic managers, garbage collectors, truck drivers and heavy equipment operators.
For example, traffic managers working around fast-moving vehicles will be safer if they wear high visibility workwear. Drivers will be able to spot them sooner and the accident could be avoided.
Benefits of Wearing Hi-Vis Safety Clothing
Some of the benefits of wearing hi-vis workwear are:
- It ensures you are visible at all times, which can avoid fatal accidents and injuries.
- It ensures a safer working environment. When employees feel safe, their productivity will increase.
- It’s easy to spot, particularly at night. For example, cyclists and motorcyclists tend to blend into the background if they are not wearing hi-vis.
- It reduces workplace disasters to a large extent.
How Hi-Vis Workwear Works?
Hi-vis workwear works as the human eye tends to easily pick out fluorescent yellows and greens than other colours. It reduces workplace fatalities because the human eye is more sensitive towards bright, contrasting colours or moving objects. When there is a contrast between the worker’s clothing and the background against which they work, the driver’s visibility increases.
A risk assessment is usually conducted to determine if the worker requires hi-vis clothing. If they do, hi-vis clothing should be given by the employer. The employee is not charged for the PPE clothing.
The employer should provide the required training to the workers to show how the PPE should be worn and the employee is required by law to use the PPE. The training should include:
- Using the clothing in a specified manner
- Instructions on when to use the apparel
- Fitting instructions
- Proper storing and maintaining
- Cleaning and decontaminating
- Checking for wear and tear
Disciplinary action can be taken against the employees if they fail to utilise the PPE.
Hi-vis workwear is a proven way to prevent work-related fatalities occurring in dangerous environments such as construction sites, industrial areas, or in high traffic areas. It is crucial to choose the proper hi-vis clothing that adheres to Australian standards.