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International Safety Equipment Association proposes revision to safety vest standard

On August 8, 2011, the International Safety Equipment Association's (ISEA's) proposal to revise the industry standard on high-visibility public safety vests became available for public comment and review. The revision is directed towards the ANSI/ISEA 207 standard published in 2006, which specified requirements for protective vests for emergency services personnel, EMT's, and other public safety workers.

The specifications include performance requirements for color and retroreflection, and also suggest how to configure high-visibility materials when constructing high-visibility safety vests. The revision provides test methods to ensure a minimum level of visibility can be maintained during ongoing care procedures .

In the update, clarification of requirements regarding identification panels, logos, and lettering are made, as these are important factors in the public service community. Also included in the revision are useful service life guidelines for high-visibility garments being worn by highway workers. These guidelines were incorporated from the Federal Highway Administration's current standards.

Comments concerning the draft were accepted by ISEA until September 19, 2011. The revisions will be sent through a consensus panel that will decide if the new standard will be submitted to ANSI for acceptance.

Currently, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has regulations that specify that high visibility garments and other safety products are required for highway workers.