Industrial Workwear Safety Standards – What do they mean?

EN, ISO or BS EN references appear on most industrial workwear items, but what do these mean and why are they important? To navigate the minefield of industrial workwear safety standards, we’ve detailed below some of the most common reference numbers, and why they are important to consider when you are choosing workwear garments.

workwear-jacketEN ISO 20471:2013

This standard relates to high visibility garments and specifies the requirements for clothing which is capable of visually signalling the user’s presence. High visibility clothing is intended to make the wearer clearly visible in any light condition when viewed by operators of vehicles or any other mechanised equipment during daylight conditions and under illumination of headlights in the dark.

Performance requirements are included for colour and retro reflection as well as for the minimum areas and for the placement of the materials in protective clothing.

The standard is split into three classes, with class 1 covering the lowest risk situations and class 3 covering those with the highest risk.

It is important to note that adding logos and branding to high visibility garments should always be done with the upmost care and attention, as the requirements limit the amount of branding that can be added. The rules on the amount of fluorescent material and reflective strip required by the certification limits the placement of branding, and the aim should always be to places logos on the contrast material, as this does not affect night time visibility.

EN ISO 13688:2013

This standard refers to protective clothing. It specifies general performance requirements for a number of different factors such as ergonomic, innocuousness, size designation, ageing, compatibility and marking of protective clothing. It is only intended to be used in combination with other standards containing requirements for specific protective performance and not a standalone basis.

BS EN 812:2012

workwear-hatThis standard refers to bump caps. Bump caps should be worn when protection is desired or required but hard hats are not compulsory. A bump cap has a hard shell and is often thinner than a traditional hard hat. Bump caps typically do not have a suspension system and are not required to conform to the same specifications of ANSI, EN or other global hard hat standards. However, as they are designed to protect the wearer from static objects, such as ceilings, and sharp or pointed objects, impact tests are carried out similar to those required for industrial helmets, but using a lower energy level.

The specifications for bump caps also include a number of requirements for the design of the helmet, in addition to performance. These typically incorporate the area of coverage provided by the helmet, as well as the field of vision afforded to the user when worn.

We can source and brand all of your industrial workwear requirements here at Logo International. Please get in touch with us on 01159402464, where we will be able to help and advise you on the best garments to go for.


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