Have you ever wondered which colour is best for high visibility flags for recumbent trikes? Which colour shows up best to other road users?
We have. In fact, we've spent so much time observing flags trailing out behind trikes ridden up and down our street that our neighbours must think we've gone nuts!
After following our kids around on many cycling journeys so we could observe different flags, this is the conclusion we've reached:
Orange flags are highly visible when the light is bright.
Green flags show up better when the light is dimmer.
Having said that, we must point out that we live in a subtropical region where the vegetation is primarily green all year round. It seems that in such an environment, the green flags seem to blend more into the background of trees while the orange stand out clearer.
Yes, I know there aren't many trees on the road but our roads are lined with trees and bush ... just in case you're wondering.
Now if we were riding in snow, or on a sandy beach, green would show up perfectly!
So the question should probably be which colour high visibility flag works best for you based on the environment in which you live?
You could do what we do and stand out outside watching flags being ridden up and down your street until your neighbours think you've gone crazy. Or you could load your trike with flags of all colours under the sun. Or just choose your favourite high visibility colour.
Colours Which Don't Work for High Visibility Flags
There are colours that don't work well for high visibility flags. The colours of dark blue and dark red are less visible to the human eye so it's good to avoid them.
Research has found that the human eye is most sensitive to light at a wavelength of 555 nanometers which is a bright green. Curious to know more? Check out this post or this video.
High Visibility Flags And Movement
While the colour of your high visibility is important, there's one more element that is vital: movement! Movement catches the human eye very quickly so make sure your high visibility flag moves freely in the breeze.
In fact, it's the movement, more than the colour, which catches the eye of a driver.
We'd love to hear about your favourite high visibility flag. Feel free to comment or leave a post on our Facebook Page.
Have a great and safe day cycling while flying the colours of your high visibility flag!
Want to know how visible trikes are from the driver's seat of a car? Check out this post.