Why do we use 3M scotchlite reflective tape?

OccuNomix trusts 3M to provide the very best in reflective materials for our garments. 3M™ Scotchlite™ Reflective Material is recognized as the leading high performance retroreflective material for enhancing worker visibility.

The Scotchlite reflective material brand provides increased peace-of-mind to people who wear safety garments. They know that their garment contains material that will enhance their visibility in low-light and nighttime conditions. And they value that their reflective material comes from 3M, a trusted name known for quality and innovation.

3M Personal Safety Products Department has dedicated customer service, technical service, sales and marketing resources with knowledge about personal protective and safety clothing as it relates to enhanced visibility.

The importance of nightime visibility is evident in the time it takes drivers to identify and respond to a pedestrian. View the chart here for more information.

3M™ Scotchlite™ Reflective Material is the broad line of reflective products that incorporate 3M's patented retroreflection technology. 3M Transfer Films, as used on OccuNomix ANSI Compliant vests, jackets, coats, shirts, sweatshirts and pants, are composed of retroreflective lenses bonded to a variety of heat-activated adhesives and applied to garments.

What is Reflective? What is Retroreflective?
To simplify the concept of reflective technology, think of it as tiny mirrors. When light is projected onto the mirrors, light is returned back to the light source. Hence, the true name of this type of system is called retroreflective. To appreciate the maximum effect of reflective technology, the best place to view it is directly behind the light source, especially when the light is projected near your eyes.

What is the Benefit of Reflective Material in Traffic Safety?
The benefit of reflective material, when working, walking or playing along the flow of traffic is that it allows people to be detected from much farther distances than they would be without reflective material, especially at night and at dawn or dusk. The increased distances translate to increased time for drivers to recognize a person, decide to respond and then make appropriate maneuvers to avoid collisions.

Compare Visibility With and Without Reflective Material
While visibility distances will vary with weather, eyesight, driver speed, how much reflective material is worn, windiness of the road, and other factors, below are some standard rules of thumb for visibility distances, based on no reflective versus reflective striping, when worn by workers or pedestrians in good weather, on a straight road, at night.

Differences In Detectability
Nighttime Visibility

Yes Or No 
Clothing Color Detectable Car Traveling MPH Avg. Time to Detect 60 MPH
(88ft/ sec)

NO Reflective

Dark clothes

55 Feet

.6 seconds

NO Reflective

White shirt

180- 220 Feet

2 sec - 2.5sec

YES Reflective

Light colors

1500-2000 Feet

17sec - 22sec

As you can see, the range of Detection time for a motorist is enhanced 30 times, when comparing a person wearing reflective striping and light colors versus no reflective and dark clothes. Detection time is enhanced 8 - 9 times by wearing reflective striping and light colors versus a white shirt and no reflective.

Phases of Perception and Reaction
Consider that motorists must pass through several phases of perception and reaction to avoid colliding with workers or pedestrians. The first phase is detection/recognition. The second is decision/response. The third phase is the driver maneuvering his car in response to an obstacle. A driver moving at just 30 miles per hour could travel a distance of over 500 feet before he is able to properly maneuver his car. Yet a worker wearing a white shirt if often not visible to drivers until they are within well under 300 feet of the car. A driver traveling at 60 mph might travel between 750 and 1150 feet before he is able to maneuver. Keep in mind that the above data is for good weather conditions. Visibility of workers and pedestrians, and driver ability to maneuver are reduced in bad weather.

The enhanced visibility distance produced by reflective material translates to added life saving seconds for motorists to detect a worker or pedestrian, decide how to respond and then actually maneuver, in order to protect workers and pedestrians from needless accidents.