Skip to Primary Navigation Skip to Site Navigation Skip to Main Content All 3M.com Site Map

Work Wear - Road Construction


Roadway workers face more risks and hazards on the job than those in nearly any other occupation. From passing motorists to work site traffic, our workers are continually expected to put their lives in the hands of others. This dangerous working environment is compounded in the early morning hours, at dusk, at night, and during inclement weather conditions when workers become even less visible to others.

The trend toward nighttime road construction only heightens the risks. Between 6 p.m. and 6 a.m., 25% of all fatal vehicle/worker accidents occur, even though less than 9% of the full-time workforce is actually on duty (1995 Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries, Bureau of Labor Statistics). This means that crews working during these low-light hours are three times more likely to be struck by a motor vehicle than their daytime counterparts.

The work site contributes to an individual’s lack of visibility.

Many pieces of equipment and safety accessories such as cones, barricades, and signs are bright orange, the same color as most safety vests. So, during daylight hours, rather than standing out against their environment, workers wearing orange vests can actually blend into it.

To be seen at night, a six-foot tall worker often relies on a safety vest that contains less than one square foot of reflective material (3M Traffic Control Material Statistics). Compare that to the equipment surrounding him or her such as a three-foot-tall cone, which incorporates a two-square-foot reflective surface.

Another consideration is whether or not the worker is recognizable as a human form to passing motorists. It may be difficult for a motorist to recognize an object as a person if that person is standing sideways, bending over, or not moving at all. A final thing to consider is the older the motorist, the more illumination that is needed for an object to be recognized.

High visibility safety apparel made with 3M™ Scotchlite™ Reflective Material is the answer. When incorporated into safety vests and other protective garments, workers’ visibility in low-light conditions and at night is enhanced. When Scotchlite reflective material is combined with a bright background color-such as fluorescent lime-yellow the workers are also more visible during the day against the sea of work-site orange. And the more reflective material that you specify on your workers’ garments to help outline a human form, the better. 


Back to Top

Scotchlite Tag

Replacing Work Apparel

When does my high-visibility apparel no longer protect me and need to be replaced?
Click here to learn more.

More about ANSI

3M™ Scotchlite™ Reflective Material Certificates:

ANSI/ISEA 107-2004 Certificates

Applying the Standard:

ANSI/ISEA 107-2010 Made Easy  (PDF, 292K)

ANSI/ISEA 107-2010 Class 2 Garments Quick Check Guidelines  (PDF, 706KB)