When it comes to highly reflective clothing for construction workers, Class 1, Class 2, and Class 3 clothing come to mind. But there is another class of pants known as Class E safety pants.
Class E safety pants are different from the other three classes. They are also known as supplemental high visibility garments.
The Class E Safety Pants are high visibility pants that provide additional visibility when worn with Class 1, 2 or 3 clothing. So in heavy rain or when visibility is very poor, these high visibility pants act as a safety shield for road workers.
This article sheds light on the many facts and myths surrounding Class E safety pants, their purpose, and more. Read along to find out all the details!
What are Class E hi-vis pants?
Hi-Vis means high visibility. Class E high visibility pants are much more visible and reflective than any other class (1-3).
They are manufactured to increase safety for construction workers on the road. They are most useful when it is raining heavily or when there is a lot of fog that greatly reduces the quality of your vision.
Even a regular Class 1, Class 2 or Class 3 high visibility vest cannot penetrate such a thick foggy coat. As a result, incoming traffic poses a danger.
In such scenarios, wearing Class E high visibility pants over Class 2 or 3 clothing can completely change the scene.
In a nutshell, the purpose of the Class E safety pants is to enhance the visibility of Class 1, Class 2 and Class 3 safety clothing.
How does hi-vis work?
High visibility is a safety concept widely accepted by OSHA. High visibility for classes 1 to 3 determines the level of visibility, with 1 being the lowest and 3 being the highest.
In extreme weather, adding the Class E Safety Pants to your high visitor vest or bib will:
- Adding Class E safety pants to a Class 2 safety vest makes it look like a Class 3 garment.
- Adding it to class 3 clothes increases the brightness while the rating stays at 3.
In all of the aforementioned cases, Class E safety pants work to increase visibility. It guarantees the safety of you and the incoming traffic.
Class E Clothing: Facts and Myths!
Class E pants are auxiliary clothing – Class E high visibility safety clothing should be worn in combination with Class 2 or 3 clothing. It alone does not qualify as safety clothing for road construction workers or traffic controllers.
There are different types of class E trousers – Class E pants include bib pants, rain pants and mesh pants.
It’s a Crime Not to Wear Class E OSHA Pants – OSHA suggests wearing Class E pants (all Class E products) if you have high visibility requirements that Class 1, 2, or 3 clothing alone cannot meet.
But it doesn’t mandate the same. So not wearing Class E products is not a crime if that’s what you’re concerned about. But if you value your life, you should wear Class E high visibility pants in heavy rain.
3 Benefits of Adding Class E Pants to Your Hi-vis Safety Ensemble
The Class E pants clearly improve visibility when the weather is overcast or when it’s raining heavily.
Let’s discuss the underrated but very important benefits of wearing Class E pants.
1.) These are waterproof pants that protect the clothes underneath. Clearly they offer more than just visibility.
2.) High quality OSHA recommended Class E pants with elastic waistline for optimum comfort. It also prevents water from entering the pants when working in heavy rain.
3.) There is usually a dark colored area at the bottom. Prevents cuffs from showing dirt that cannot be separated from construction workers on the road.
Top 3 Class E Safety Pants
1.) Pioneer Ripstop High Visibility Class E Bin Pants
This is a 100% waterproof class E safety pant that is also abrasion resistant. The visibility tape is highly reflective and very safe.
When worn with a Class 2 vest or shirt, it provides the same level of protection as Class 3 clothing. On top of that, it’s also lightweight.
Other great features that make this class e-safety pants one of the best on the market are:
1.) Fully compliant with ANSI/ISEA 107-15 standards recommended and safety tested by OSHA.
2.) Available in yellow/green and orange colors for better visibility at night.
3.) Not easy to puncture and not easy to tear.
4.) Heat-sealed seams make the pants last longer.
5.) Wide variety of sizes. These pants are easily available in sizes up to 4XL.
Some users have reported that these class e high visibility pants don’t fit their size.
2.) JORESTECH Heavy Duty Class E Safety Pants
These Yellow/Lime Class E safety pants have 360° reflective strips to double your visibility. Some of the key features that make this safety pants the best on the market are:
1.) These rugged pants are made from PU and are 100% waterproof.
2.) Elastic adjustable waist for added comfort.
3.) Available in multiple sizes from S to 4XL.
4.) Sturdy, puncture-resistant and wear-resistant.
Cons: Consumers report that these pants are one size larger. So please follow the size chart carefully.
3.) Ergodyne GloWear High Visibility Class E Reflective Pants
These lime green high visibility class e pants have a highly reflective silver colored 360° strip. Provides Class 3 visibility when worn with Class 2 high visibility clothing.
1.) These pants are waterproof.
2.) Resistant to abrasion, wear, tear and puncture.
3.) It will make you stand out even at night.
Cons: Their cost can be a constraint. But they are worth every penny spent on them.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. Does OSHA require skimpy clothing?
OSHA suggests wearing Class E visibility pants with a Class 2 vest and shirt. However, it is not legally compulsory. Still, as someone who values life, you should wear high-visibility class e-pants.
2. Is red considered hi-vis?
According to ANSI and ISEA, red and orange-red are considered high visibility colors. Silver stripes make them even more noticeable and reflective.
3. Is blue considered a hi-vis color?
No, blue does not emit light. So from a distance, at night, or in poor visibility, this color is very difficult to notice.
Instead, yellow, lime, red, and orange-red colors with 360° reflective stripes are OSHA-approved high-visibility colors for Class E pants.
4. Is hi-vis required?
If safety is important to you, yes. Although not yet legally mandated, wearing high visibility class e safety pants while in traffic is the safest way to avoid a collision with a vehicle.
Class E safety pants are supplementary clothing that must be worn with Class 2 clothing to improve visibility on the road at night.
These pants do not provide protection when worn without Class 2 or 3 clothing, but when worn with Class 2 or 3 clothing, these pants provide traffic protection when: increase.
- it’s raining.
- Low visibility.
- You are handling traffic at night.
In a nutshell, I hope this guide helps you understand the importance of wearing class e safety pants!