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8/9/2005
3M Pushing Mandatory Reflective Clothing for Pedestrians
Ireland's National Safety Council rejects the call for mandatory reflective clothing law for pedestrians.

Reflective clothing
3M, the worldwide technology company famous for "Post-It" notes, wants to increase the market for its line of reflective clothing by convincing governments to mandate shiny apparel for pedestrians. The company cites statistics from the UK Department for Transport which suggests that 28 percent of vehicle collisions with pedestrians are caused by dark clothing.

"Highly visible reflective vests, complying with European standards, can cost as little as 8 euros each," Don Breen, a spokesman for 3M's office in Ireland, told online.ie. "Surely this is a very worthwhile investment by every motorist and pedestrian when you consider the number of lives that can be saved?"

3M markets a line of reflective clothing called Scotchlite. "Versatility, performance and fashion come together in Scotchlite reflective material," according to the company's website.

Ireland's National Safety Council responded to 3M's request by stressing that they believe reflective clothing is valuable, but that such a law would be unenforceable. Several military bases in the US mandate reflective clothing for military joggers:

"When running on the shoulders of the road before morning colors and after evening colors, and during periods of reduced visibility, all individuals will either wear reflective clothing or a vest/belt containing reflective material that is visible," Quantico, Virginia's Marine Corps Base Order 5560.2C reads. Fort Leavenworth, Kansas requires reflective clothing for cyclists.

Article Excerpt:
"I'm sure if it's something that could be enforced," said [National Safety Council] spokesman Brian Farrell. "But people do have a personal responsibility to themselves, particularly in rural areas where there are dark unlit roads late at night."
Source: Clothing plan to cut road deaths 'unenforceable' (online.ie (Ireland), 8/9/2005)

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