5 Excellent Hi Vis Jackets to Keep you Warm, Dry and Visible

5 Excellent Hi Vis Jackets to Keep you Warm, Dry and Visible

For those working in the security industries, there are a lot of pieces of gear that are important to have with you, or on you, for every moment of your work shift.

Appropriate dress will keep you warm or cool, depending on the climate. Good security boots will make a long shift that much more comfortable and allow for the long patrol walks often required. One category of gear that is of primary importance, but might not come immediately to mind, are hi vis jackets. 

Whether or not you’ll be working at night, a garment of some kind that allows for people in cars or on the street to see you is a requirement for your safety. A hi-vis jacket is a simple and practical avenue to fulfill this requirement. In this article, I’ll cover the basics of hi-vis jackets and how they work. At the end, I’ll review five options for hi-vis jackets that will keep you safe no matter what your work duties require.

For those working in the security industries, there are a lot of pieces of gear that are important to have with you, or on you, for every moment of your work shift.

Appropriate dress will keep you warm or cool, depending on the climate. Good security boots will make a long shift that much more comfortable and allow for the long patrol walks often required. One category of gear that is of primary importance, but might not come immediately to mind, are hi vis jackets. 

Whether or not you’ll be working at night, a garment of some kind that allows for people in cars or on the street to see you is a requirement for your safety. A hi-vis jacket is a simple and practical avenue to fulfill this requirement. In this article, I’ll cover the basics of hi-vis jackets and how they work. At the end, I’ll review five options for hi-vis jackets that will keep you safe no matter what your work duties require.

How does a High-Vis Jacket Work?

High-vis is short for ‘high visibility’. Hi-vis jackets are made of material in fluorescent colors, and additionally, have strips of a reflective material on the arms and across the torso of the jacket. You can get other garments made to be hi-vis; pants and vests, even t-shirts and knitted caps. If you are going to be on a long work shift where a hi-vis garment is a necessity, a jacket is your best bet for full coverage and safety. And since you’ll be wearing a jacket in colder weather anyway, getting a hi-vis jacket is a practical way to double up on the safety and comfort by combining these two needs. 

In foggy or rainy conditions, a driver will be dealing with water on their windshield, windshield wipers, and/or condensation on the inside of the car. They’ll be distracted and subject to confusing and distorted visibility conditions outside, as well as a severely shortened visibility range. If you are wearing a fluorescent material, you’ll stand out much more than if you were wearing dull or dark colors.

In foggy or rainy conditions, a driver will be dealing with water on their windshield, windshield wipers, and/or condensation on the inside of the car. They’ll be distracted and subject to confusing and distorted visibility conditions outside, as well as a severely shortened visibility range. If you are wearing a fluorescent material, you’ll stand out much more than if you were wearing dull or dark colors. 

Those few seconds that the fluorescent material gives the driver to brake or swerve might mean the difference between life or death- or at least serious injury- for you. Fluorescent colors are also important for times like sunrise and dusk when the light conditions are changing rapidly and the visibility will be off. 

Once the sun is completely down, there won’t be any UV rays to interact with the fluorescent material, and someone wearing a hi-vis garment without reflective tape will be just as hard to see as someone wearing black. For this reason, hi-vis jackets incorporate reflective tape. Reflective tape works by bouncing back light from a source such as a flashlight or headlights. 

Reflective tape only works if there is a light to reflect back; for this reason, it isn’t useful during the daytime, when drivers often have their headlights off or the light reflected back is hard to see against the light of the sun. There are different kinds of reflective tape; the material used might be comprised of plastic vinyl, or of glass bead tape. Either way, they’ll allow someone driving in a car to see you much sooner than they would 

Why do you need a High-Vis Jacket?

Hi-vis jackets are crucial if you are working outside in any situation where you might be coming into contact with traffic, motorized forklifts, or people that you don’t want to surprise. In any situation in which you want to be visible to machinery or people that might cause you harm, you want to make sure you’re wearing a high visibility jacket. 

Hi vis jacket s will identify you as a member of security and increase awareness of a security presence. 

These garments are used by cyclists, runners, and schoolchildren to ensure road safety, but they’re also used by construction workers and security personnel. Regulations in Europe and America outline standards for protective and hi-vis clothing while on the job. 

Personal Protective Equipment Regulations

In Europe, EN 343 dictates a minimum amount of coverage required in wet weather. Water penetration resistance and breathability are both factors in this rule. There are three numbered designations for each category

EN 471 covers high visibility clothing requirements. The standards were updated in 2003 and also have three levels; Class 1, 2 and 3. 
Check with your employer to see what level of water protection and high visibility are required for your position. 

the-reviews

Mens Hi Visibility Two Tone Safety Quilted Bomber Jacket

The Two Tone Safety Quilted Bomber jacket is a versatile and solid choice for a waterproof and highly visible safety jacket. Made from polyester synthetic material, the jacket is treated with 300 Oxford PU to be fully water repellent. The jacket conforms to both EN 343 for water protection, and EN 471 for high visibility. 

The jacket is made for safety and comfort. The zip fastening has a studded storm flap. This way, if you’re outdoors during a rainstorm you’ll stay dry, as no water will be able to leak in through the teeth of the zipper. The coat has elasticized cuffs and a partly elasticized hem so you can really block out moisture. The cuffs aren’t adjustable, which is a minor downside to this otherwise excellent coat. 

The diamond quilt lining and fleece collar guarantee you’ll stay warm in any weather. A concealed hood in the collar gives you the option of covering up your head in cold or wet weather or tucking it away on a dry day. 

This jacket has a ton of pocket options. A breast pocket is designed to hold your phone but unfortunately, it doesn’t have the same water protection as the front zipper. There are additional pockets on the inside for pens and tools and a name badge holder on the chest. 

The jacket comes in an orange/navy combo, making is stylish and comfortable. 

Pros

  • Conforms to BS EN 343 & 471
  • Concealed hood in collar
  • Available in several different colours

Cons

  • Cuffs aren’t adjustable
  • No Pocket protection, meaning rain gets into the pockets

Hi Viz Vis Waterproof Storm Padded Parka Jacket

The Padded Parka jacket is similar to the Two Tone Quilted Bomber in many ways. This jacket is also made of polyester, but lacks the Oxford 300 coating and is therefore not as fully waterproof. It is machine washable, however. 

The heavy duty zipper has a storm flap to keep out water during the wettest weather and the collar conceals a hood for versatility. 

A polyester quilted lining makes this jacket quite warm, but it isn’t incredibly heavy to wear.

This lightness will enable you to move around and carry out your work duties without feeling too weighted down, but still warm. Two large front pockets provide space for you to warm your hands, and the storm flaps over the pockets will keep out water when your hands are busy.

Although this jacket isn’t waterproof and therefore doesn’t conform to EN 343 for water protection, it does conform to the highest visibility level of EN 471 for maximum safety. The cuffs are elasticated but this jacket does run long, making it best for guards on the taller side. 

Pros

  • Conforms to EN 471 class 3 (highest level of visibility)
  • Thick quilting inside but not to heavy to wear, good with a fleece jacket

Cons

  • Longer length than a normal jacket
  • Not waterproof in heavy downpours

WWK Hi Viz Vis Padded Parka Jacket

The Padded Winter Warm Jacket has the perk of coming in a variety of sizes from small to 6XL, making it a great choice for workers of any size. The jacket comes in a bomber style. The collar has a concealed hood, much like the other options reviewed here, as a versatile hood seems to be close to a requirement for this kind of work in changing weather. 

This jacket is machine washable. The inside collar is covered in a soft fleece for maximum comfort during a long shift at work. The padding on the inside of the jacket will keep you warm, but be aware this jacket is not fully waterproof. 

The biggest perk of this jacket in particular is the multitude of pockets. If you need to carry a lot of gear around with you and don’t want to carry a bag, this jacket might be for you. 

A pocket on the outside is big enough for a walkie talkie or a phone. There are multiple pockets outside and large inside pockets for paperwork or things you need to keep extra protected. 

There is an ID pocket but be aware sized 4XL-6XL do not come with an ID pocket. 

Pros

  • Soft Micro Fleece On Collor For Extra Comfort
  • Velcro pockets and zip pockets
  • large inside and breast pockets (Plenty of pockets)

Cons

  • It’s water resistant but not 100% water proof

DUNLOP Hi Viz Bomber Jacket Mens Yellow

This Safety Bomber Jacket comes in yellow or orange. This is the only jacket on the list with a hood that is not concealed, but if this is a worry for you it’s important to know that the hood is adjustable. You also won’t have to fuss with taking it in and out of the collar. 

This jacket is water resistant, but not fully waterproof and therefore doesn’t fit the standards or EN 343. It does have the fluorescent colour and reflective stripes necessary for high visibility. 

This jacket has an elasticised waist to block out cold and moisture, but the elastic waist is tight and isn’t for everyone.

The quilted lining will keep you warm and despite being 100% polyester the jacket is washable. 

The zipper is full length and has a buttoned flap for moisture control. There are zipped pockets on the outside but without a moisture repelling flap the pockets might be susceptible to rain. Anything you want to keep fully dry, you can keep within the inside pockets. 

This jacket runs small, so order a size bigger for a tight fit and two sizes bigger than your usual for a loose fit or if you want to wear layers underneath. 

Pros

  • Adjustable hood
  • Available in yellow or orange
  • Reflective bomber jacket

Cons

  • We recommend ordering a larger size for a close fit and two sizes if you like the jacket loose fitting
  • Many don’t like the elasticated bottom

Hi Viz 3/4 Length Parka Reflective Tape Waterproof Jacket

This ¾ length parka is the only jacket on this list that does not come in a bright orange or yellow color. It is a dark navy blue, which has its up and downsides. Blue is not an ideal color for fluorescent daylight visibility. However, if you’re working primarily at night this jacket does have reflective strips which are the important factor for working in the dark. 

This jacket is of excellent quality and is especially great in the rain. The 100% polyester fabric is coated for water shedding, and additionally the seams are taped to exclude water seepage. The heavy duty zip is 2-way and is also protected with a studded storm flap so water doesn’t get in between the teeth of the zipper. 

The ¾ length and padded interior will keep you warm and allow for sitting on wet surfaces as well. The jacket includes a concealed hood, so you can keep it tucket away for dry weather or use it during wet or cold shifts at work. 

Two very large pockets on the outside have room for any tools or materials you need to carry with you, and exterior flaps will keep water from getting into the pockets. The coat has additional pockets on the outside for a phone, pens or ID badge. 

Whichever jacket you choose, a hi vis jacket is a necessity for any outdoor security work. If you are working during the daytime, make sure you choose a very brightly colored fluorescent material. If you are working at night, prioritize reflective strips. If you’re work straddles the line between dark and light times of the day, make sure to get a jacket that has both. A hood, deep pockets and flaps to protect against rain will keep you and your tools warm and dry. You deserve comfort on those long work shifts, and these high visibility jackets will keep you safe as well.

Pros

  • Excellent quality, nicely padded and waterproof
  • Three quarter length
  • 2 Lower Pockets with Flaps

Cons

  • Only available in dark blue

Summary

We really liked each one of these Hi Viz Jackets, the Two Tone Bomber Jacket conforms to BS EN 343 so it is water resistant and EN 471 with the highest visibility. It has a concealed hood and available in 5 different colours. The only problem was that rain occasionally made its way into the pockets.

The Storm Padded Parka had a thick quilting inside to keep you warm, but the coat isn’t too heavy, it conforms to EN 471 class 3, giving it the highest level of visibility. It runs longer than some other jackets, but doesn’t conform to EN 343 so it isn’t the most water resistant jacket.

The DUNLOP Hi Viz Bomber Jacket is available in full illuminous yellow or orange, has an adjustable hood and is water resistant, but not water proof. The bottom of the jacket is elasticated, which is a plus for many and a downfall for others.

Our two winners are the Grey Reflective Tape Waterproof Jacket is one of the better quality jackets, it’s ¾ length with comfy padding and waterproof outer layer. The two large pockets have flaps, making it great in heavy rain. The only downside is that it is in dark grey/blue with fluorescent strips, meaning it isn’t the most visible of our list of jackets.

The WWK Hi Viz Vis Padded Parka has a comfortable soft microfleece collar, with plenty of large Velcro and zipped pockets, particularly one larger pocket for a Radio or mobile phone to stash into. As with the other jackets it is water resistant but not water proof.