For a very quick guide on which European countries have an obligation to carry first aid dressing material, a warning triangle and/or high-visibility vest, the best place to look is our very useful overview. You will find this here.
There is also an obligation to carry high-visibility clothing in Germany. This is regulated in Section 53a of the German Road Traffic Licensing Regulations (StVZO). The regulation has applied since 1 July 2014. All cars, trucks and buses must have a high-visibility vest on board. According to the new regulation, one high-visibility vest per vehicle must be available for the driver. He should wear it when he leaves the vehicle on public roads, after a breakdown or accident for example. If no vest is on board, a fine may be imposed.
High-visibility clothing within the meaning of this provision is considered suitable if it complies with DIN EN 471:2003+A1:2007, March 2008 edition or EN ISO 20471:2013.
High-visibility clothing in company vehicles
However, many people are not aware that such a regulation for company vehicles has been in place in Germany for a long time now. The obligation to carry high-visibility clothing can be read up on in the Employer's Liability Insurance Association's regulation for safety and health at work under sections 31 and 56 of the Accident Prevention Regulation for Vehicles (BGV D 29). This states among other things: "The employer shall equip mechanically driven multi-track vehicles with suitable high-visibility clothing for at least one insured person."
For special activities, such as towing services, additional requirements for high-visibility clothing may apply.
Tip: place the high-visibility vest near the driver's seat so that you can put it on before getting out of the car and do not have to go to the boot first. We recommend carrying as many high-visibility vests as you usually carry people. But preferably as many as you have seats.
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If you are travelling abroad by car, you should find out about the obligation to carry high-visibility vests before you start your journey. For in some countries, such as Italy, it is mandatory to carry not only a high-visibility vest for the driver but also for all passengers.