A road construction worker using a cut-off saw had his high visibility shirt catch fire when sparks hit the front of his shirt.
He sustained burns to his stomach area and to both hands after trying to pat out the flames with his bare hands.
A lot of the thin outer high visibility clothing is made of synthetic fibres, such as polyester and nylon, which easily melts and can readily catch fire.
Where the risk assessment (per SWMS or JSA) identifies sparks or ignition risks which cannot be avoided, then flame retardant clothing should be specified.
Fire resistant high visibility clothing is available in a variety of fabrics including; cotton, wool, leather, Kevlar, or Proban.
For more information refer to Vic WorkSafe Alert from www.worksafe.vic.gov.au.