New Health and Safety Law Poster Deadline Coming

The HSE is reminding UK businesses that the new version of the health and safety law poster must be displayed from 5 April this year. Under the Health and Safety Information for Employees Regulations, all employers have a legal duty to display the approved poster in a prominent position in the workplace or to provide each worker with a copy of the approved leaflet, outlining British Health and Safety law, which has also been updated.

The new 2009 versions of the poster replace the versions published in April 1999 and have been updated after research showed that the old versions were visually unappealing and rarely read, according to HSE. The newer poster has been redesigned to be more readable and engaging, as well as reflecting changes in the law.

Each copy of the 2009 poster also incorporates a unique, serially numbered hologram in the bottom right hand corner to prevent mis-selling. Although first introduced in 2009, HSE set a five year transition period for replacing the 1999 poster and a leaflet with the newer versions, with a deadline of 5th April 2014.

The 1999 versions of the approved poster are no longer for sale. You can purchase the A3 Health and Safety Law posters here or for more information visit the HSE law poster page for more info.

No Smoking Day 12th March

No smoking day is one of the UK’s biggest annual health awareness campaigns, and our range of “no smoking signs” helps companies create smoke-free environments. Every year over a million smokers will use No Smoking Day to try to quit.

The campaign is run by the British Heart Foundation, and helps smokers who want to quit by creating a supportive environment, and by highlighting the many sources of help and advice available.

No Smoking Day has been running since Ash Wednesday in 1983, when it was called Quit for the day.

The campaign is re-designed every year to help spur smokers into action.

Our mission is to appeal to smokers of all types – whatever their age, sex or social class.

We publicise and explain the help that smokers can get when they want to stop, and capture the attention of the media with lots of supportive TV, newspaper and radio coverage. No Smoking Day takes place on 12th March this year and the events website is packed with advice and resources. The Why Quit? section of the website loks in-depth at what’s in a cigarette and the health benefits of giving up smoking as well as the financial savings, with an interactive calculator to enable users to see how much money they could save each week, month and over the course of a year.

For more information please visit

Office workers: steps to keep you safe by RoSPA

Here in the UK, nearly one in three employees work in an office of some description – around 10 million of us in total. However, far too many people are still being injured or suffering accidents in the office. With this in mind. RoSPA has produced a short guide to provide you, and your boss, with some suggestions to make your office safer right now.

1. Don’t be a slouch!

According to the NHS, back pain is responsible for 7.6 million lost work days every year. One of the major causes of back pain is poor posture – a real problem for those of us who spend our days stuck behind desks.

Training to assess these factors can help employers meet their legal requirements, as well as combating the musculoskeletal disorders, reduced concentration levels and other ill-health effects that are symptomatic of time spent at poorly-designed workstations.

2. Watch those water bottles

The other major cause of back injury is caused by lifting and moving objects in the workplace. What might surprise you is that a large proportion of these injuries are caused not by the weight of the objects, but by poor manual handling techniques. Even everyday tasks – such as changing the water cooler or refilling the printer – can occasionally lead to serious injury.

3. Remember to breathe

Offices can be a stressful environment on the best of days. Add to this a pressing deadline, a ‘difficult’ boss and lack of sleep and you have the potential for a Chernobyl-style melt down!

Now of course, a little bit of stress can be a positive thing – it’s only when that stress becomes excessive and prolonged that it can lead to serious mental and physical illness. In fact, according to the Chartered Institute of Professional Development, workplace stress is one of the biggest causes of employee absence – and also one of the more difficult issues to manage.

Taking regular breaks, stretching and practicing breathing exercises can all help when you’re feeling the pressure. RoSPA have also produced a comprehensive guide to managing work related stress – meaning you can take a deep breath and step away from the staple gun!

For more office safety tips, please visit RoSPA’s Workplace Safety Blog.

We also offer a wide range of slips, trips and falls signs to help make your office a safer place to work.

Temporary sign warns of danger – The Nelson Mail

See on Scoop.itSafety Signs

The Nelson Mail
Temporary sign warns of danger
The Nelson Mail
Temporary signage has been erected at Maruia Falls, warning people not to go beyond the safety barriers after a drowning and a near-fatality during the past week.


Stocksigns Group‘s insight:


Water safety remains a big issue particularly in the UK during this recent period of stormy weather


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Safety Signs in the workplace

Safety is a hot topic in most businesses regardless of industry sector. Safety signs or warning signs are helpful in indicating various hazards ahead. These signs also help in reducing accidents at a given workplace.

These safety signs may consists of words with safety messages, pictorial warning symbols that consists various sizes, shapes, and colours. Each colour is standardized and reflects a meaning (see our post of safety signs colours and meanings). On the other hand, there are some types of safety signs which are often in the form of posters and are designed to provide significant information or instructions to the employees, informing them of their duties and responsibilities. Other signs are designed to be displayed, when the areas are cleaned, displaying a warning that the floor is wet, often temporary and portable in nature.

When you are performing at work or in a place that is prone to accidents or an area identified by your risk assessments, the signs here are needed to guide you as you perform your tasks in the safest way possible.

Regardless of the kind of industry, safety signs are needed in every business. Hospital, construction sites, restaurants, hotels, cafes, bars, etc. are in need of these signs. Employers also need to spend time to familiarize themselves with these laws and other requirements for health and safety, and be sure that they have relevant safety signs. A reputable safety sign company can organise a site survey of your premises to ensure your signage meets current legislation and safety best practice.

Safety is an important issue that can have a huge impact on the business, whether it is big or small, regardless of the industry. Failing to update your signage as your business changes, could lead to extensive fines or have more serious consequences including prison sentences, personal injuries or even loss of life. For traditional businesses, there are various kinds of basic safety signs and symbols that might be required. It is of utmost importance that employees are well-protected from any kind of danger all the time, thus a good range of safety signs are necessary in the business.

Do You know a Safety Angel?

Do you know a Guardian Angel?- A Guest Blog from RoSPA (The Royal Society of the Prevention of Accidents)

When you think about the people who work to keep us safe in the workplace, perhaps the archetypal hero springs to mind; the person who leaps into action when things go wrong, throwing themselves into the path of danger to protect others. However, here at the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents, we think that it’s the people who act before the need for heroics that deserve to be celebrated.

It’s funny, like a handful pebbles tossed into a lake, sometimes the smallest action can make huge ripples. For example, something as simple as recognising a risk and then arranging appropriate safety signs to raise awareness can be enough to prevent a serious accident or injury. More often than not, the person who was at risk will carry on obliviously, unaware that they have been protected by ‘the silent hand of safety’.

However, we believe that it’s these sometimes actions that deserve to be rewarded. That’s why RoSPA has developed The Guardian Angel Award – so that we can shine a light on these sometimes small acts of safety that have a big impact!

So, if you know someone who has made a difference – be it through a major piece of community work or through something as simple as making appropriate signs available to protect staff – then we want to hear from you.

Visit to find out more information, and nominate your RoSPA Guardian Angels today!

New Year Time for Safety Signs MOT?

As the New Year comes upon us our thoughts often turn to personal improvements we intend to make over the coming year, but one much over looked resolution is the implementation of a regular safety sign audit.

Julian Rowlandson, Director at Stocksigns explains: “If you own a car it is most probable that you obtain and MOT and carry out a routine service to keep your vehicle fully functional and compliant. But few companies, despite their legal obligations to do so, regularly revisit their fire and other mandatory signage. How often does one hear of tragedy caused by fire exit routes not being clear and available for use? Often these oversights maybe associated with changes within business operations and a failure to update fire escape signs and safe routes of escape to embrace these operational changes.”

Failing to update your signage as your business changes, could lead to extensive fines or have more serious consequences including prison sentences, personal injuries or even loss of life. These simple inexpensive precautions could help protect your business, staff and visitors.

Taking Stock of your Safety Signs

Take time to walk around your premises, it may take a couple of trips round if you have a large or complicated building layout.
Note all your existing fire and safety signs. Do you have all the necessary signs covered by legislation? Through the course of the year things happen to your building, were signs replaced after that wall got repainted? Were your signs covered up when you had the last office move round? This photograph illustrates a common example. The fire alarm call points in this hotel were relocated during a refit. Unfortunately the sign has not been updated and the fire action notice now marks just a redundant blanking plate. On the flip side, you guessed it, the alarm call points were relocated but they have failed to install the correct fire equipment signage to mark its new location. Many people find that their fire signage is often in the wrong place, check your emergency escape signage is being displayed properly. If you are not sure whether you are completely covered legally get a site survey from a reputable sign company to give you peace of mind.

While it isn’t yet a requirement to change all your existing safety signs to the new ISO 7010 versions, the advice is not to mix signage from different legislative standards. Best practice recommends, if changes or additions are needed, updating to the most recent standard. This photo shows a BS 5499 fire exit sign directly mounted next to a sign with
symbols from the EEC directive 92/58, which could lead to confusion.

 Care of your safety Signs

Safety signs over time can become dirty or damaged and several environmental factors can affect your signs. Signs in areas of high traffic can become dirty quickly. Make sure all signs are clean and clear and can be easily read, and cleaned where needed. Replace where necessary any signs if they are illegible and beyond cleaning.

Taking time to review your premises, business practices and people flow through the building and ensuring you have the correct signage for any risks identified should form a critical and regular part of your company’s safety procedures. Routinely carrying out an audit every six months should be sufficient for most companies, with additional assessments whenever any refurbishment or reorganisation work is carried out.

RIDDOR reporting: are you ready for the change? Guest Post From RoSPA

RIDDOR reporting: are you ready for the change?
As a result of the Government’s health safety reform programme, RIDDOR has been streamlined and amended. For those of you still struggling to get to grips with the changes, this guide provides a brief summary.
RIDDOR Explained
The Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations place a legal duty on employers, the self-employed and people in control of work premises (the Responsible Person) to report certain serious workplace accidents, occupational diseases and specified dangerous occurrences (near misses). Other than for certain gas incidents, deaths and injuries only need to be reported only when:
• there has been an accident which caused the injury
• the accident was work-related
• the injury is of a type which is reportable

Please note: In relation to RIDDOR, an accident is a separate, identifiable, unintended incident, which causes physical injury. This specifically includes acts of non-consensual violence to people at work.
RIDDOR Changes
As of 2013, the HSE have implemented changes to RIDDOR to clarify and simplify the reporting requirements. According to the HSE, the main changes are in the following areas:
• The classification of ‘major injuries’ to workers is replaced with a shorter list of ‘specified injuries’.
• The existing schedule detailing 47 types of industrial disease is replaced with eight categories of reportable work-related illness.
• Fewer types of ‘dangerous occurrence’ require reporting.
There are no significant changes to the reporting requirements for:
• fatal accidents;
• accidents to non-workers (members of the public); and
• accidents resulting in a worker being unable to perform their normal range of duties for more than seven days

How an incident at work is reported and the criteria that determine whether an incident should be investigated by the enforcing authority remain the same.

For more information on how the RIDDOR changes could affect you, please visit the RoSPA Workplace Safety Blog.

Bricklayer’s death showed safety flaws on Lincolnshire construction site – This is Lincolnshire

This is Lincolnshire Bricklayer’s death showed safety flaws on Lincolnshire construction site This is Lincolnshire A CONSTRUCTION company and its site manager have each been ordered to pay £77,500 court costs after admitting to health and safety…


Stocksigns Group‘s insight:


 ‘A sad but cautionary tale’ Sandy Barnes from First Call Signs

Safety at Street Works and Road Works: a code of practice

The Department of Transport has updated its code of practice on work safety at street works and road works sites, with more emphasis on risk assessment, site-specific design and the needs of the pedestrians and other vulnerable road users.
Street works are, of course, essential for a range of reasons. But unfortunately, they
can cause considerable local disruption, increasing congestion and journey times.
This increases frustration and can result in drivers and riders taking increased risks
and endangering their own and others safety.

Pedestrian traffic can also be disrupted by road works and improperly reinstated
pavements can cause injury through trips and falls. Such injuries can be particularly
serious in the case of older pedestrians.

The statutory Code of practice 2013 revises and updates the exisiting Code of practice 2001, which is known informally as the ‘safety code’ or the ‘red book’.

The Department for Transport says the new guidnace is simpler to follow and the site layout diagrams have been redrawn to make them easier to understand. The advie on high visibility clothing and visibility requirements for works vehicles has also been updated.

Additional guidance has been included on mobile and short duration works and working near tramways and railways. The Code of practice comes into force on 1 October 2014. It applies to signing, lighting and guarding of street works and road works on all highways and roads, except motorways and dual carriageways witht he speed limit of 50mph or more.

In response to a previous consultaion paper from the Department of Transport, RoSPA commented

“RoSPA welcomes the work being undertaken by all the parties involved in street
works to ensure that necessary street works can carried out with the minimum
amount of disruption. It is beneficial that this Code of Practice continues to develop
to meet changing circumstances and RoSPA hopes that this will continue.”

For more information visit the Department of Transport and RoSPA. Stocksign can supply  a range of products for safe working practice for street works, including cones, stackable and chapter 8 barriers, temporary road works signs, hi-vis clothing and other PPE equipment, order our catalogue for more details.

South Africa building site collapses, one worker dead, 50 trapped – Reuters UK

Construction site workers

Sydney Morning Herald South Africa building site collapses, one worker dead, 50 trapped Reuters UK If safety regulations are found to have been breached, the accident could sour already fraught labour relations in South Africa’s construction sector…


Stocksigns Group‘s insight:

Tragically Construction sites still provide some of the most hazardous working environments today. Construction safety signage has to stay at the top of the industry agenda.

See on

Digital Signage – 6 easy ways to boost sales with digital signage

digital signage

Digital Signage

6 easy ways to boost holiday sales with digital signage
Digital Signage Today
The holidays are nearly upon us, and the oncoming holiday sales season is crucially important for retailers.


Stocksigns Group‘s insight:

Our sister company Messagemaker Display can help you create didgital LED signs with high impact which can drive sales

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Commissioner proposes signage changes to increase area visitation – Rapid City Journal

Commissioner proposes signage changes to increase area visitation Rapid City Journal Aker said he wants the county to work with the cities of Sturgis, Piedmont and Summerset to develop signage along Interstate 90 that will direct drivers to the…


Stocksigns Group‘s insight:


Signage can be the key to boosting both volume and ease of flow of visitors to a town or attractions


Sign Design – A 5 Step Plan

Stocksigns has been manufacturing signs for more than fifty years and in that time we have been able to advise our customers on the principles of sign design. Now the range of signage applications, together with the ever growing list of materials and manufacturing techniques available, means there are an infinate number of design factors to take into consideration. Rather than going into design elements in terms of colours and fonts, here are some simple steps that can be taken to help you with sign design and choice.

These steps can be divided into;

  • Step 1 Signage function
  • Step 2 Sign Check List
  • Step 3 Do’s and Don’ts
  • Step 4 Legislative requirements
  • Step 5 Environmental considerations

Step 1 Signage Functions.

What do you want your sign or signage to do? The types of sign function can be broadly devided into.

  • Information
  • Directional
  • Brand/Corporate Image
  • Company Culture/mission statements
  • Health & safety
  • Motivational
  • Advertising

Part of the design of your sign will depend on its intended use and function, but don’t forget a sign can be designed to carry out more than one job. Your directional and wayfinding signs can also carry your logo and be designed using your company colours and fonts, helping to build  corporate brand, while carrying out its primary task of guiding staff and visitors. Even health and safety signs can be branded, as long as your company details don’t impede the delivery of the safety message or render the sign non-compliant with  safety legislation.

Step 2 Sign Check List

This step is designed as a series of questions to consider while choosing and designing your signs. They provide a framework of elements to consider to make sure you get the sign you both want and need.

Is the sign really necessary? An over use of signs can cause ‘sign blindness’. Try to avoid this by only creating the essential signs, and by making those you do create, work hard and do the job well.

Is it informative/give the right message? Different people interpret different things in different ways. Show your design to others for their opinion and interpretation. Have they read the sign in the way you intended? Adjust your text until you are sure that the message you want is being conveyed clearly.

Is the sign in the optimum position? Approach the proposed sign site from different directions. A site survey can help in this situation. From what distance does the sign need to be visiable from? Are there any obstructions to the view?

Longevity. How long do you need the sign to work for you? Most signage needs to be fixed permanently. Have you selected a material that will cope with the environmental pressures? Is the sign in a public place? Is there a lot of pedestrian traffic? Do you need something with high environmental resistance like vitreous enamel? Alternatively is the sign required for just a short time? If you are designing event signs you will probably want something that is cost effective and easy to put up and take down. Do you need to update the sign frequently? Room functions for example can often change, if so choose a solution that will offer you flexibility.

If you are using a sign system, does it fulfil all the requirements e.g. corporate identity, legisation, function and adaptability?

Step 3 Dos and Dont’s

This step is just some general advice and common sense but serves as a guide.

  • Don’t over kill – less is often more (again avoid sign blindness)
  • Do get a site survey from a reputable sign company if in any doubt about legislation or requirements.
  • Do it properly. No half harted effort i.e. plan the project, mistakes can be costly.
  • Do consider your employees and colleagues needs.
  • Do think about future developments – how easy will it be to add or update signs
  • Don’t use short cuts
  • Do try and achieve a uniform structure to the signage scheme – aim for consistancy through-out all your signs

Step 4 Legislative Requirements

Depending on the type or function of your sign there may be legislative obligations your sign needs to fulfil. Symbols used in safety signage are covered by The Health & Safety (Safety Signs and Signals Regulations) 1966 and BS EN ISO 7010. The Disability Discrimination Act (DDA) and the Technical Buletin 24 of the Joint Mobility Unit (now part of the RNIB’s Access Consultancy Services) may need to be consulted when considering access through your building. Some exterior signage may need planning permission particularly if the sign is illuminated or of a large size. While we can’t apply for planning permission on your behalf, we can advise you on whether you are likely to need it.

Step 5 Environmental Considerations

In step 2 we touched very lightly on some environmental considerations. The most obvious of which are is the sign to be located indoors or outdoors? what’s more does the sign have to be visible at night time? does ilumination have to be a consideration? Vitreous Enamel signs can tolerate a number of different environmental factors, resulting in long-lasting, vibrant, non-fade quality signs regardless of weather conditions or busyness of location, making them ideal for wayfinding signage and street maps.

We hope that this simple guide will give you some ideas when choosing the type and style of the sign you require guide will help you when chosing the type and style of sign you require. For more help or information please contact our Sales Team on 01737 77 40 72 or and we would be delighted to help you find the right sign design for you.

School Signs from Stocksigns – new video

School signs are one of the niche areas Stocksigns has excelled at in recent years. Working closely with schools, universities and colleges to bring you the very best in school signage.

“Signs for Schools” brings together the core school safety signs range, information signs and custom made notice boards and general school signs and signage in an easy guide for schools and colleges. Stocksigns has been working with schools, colleges and universities for many years and as a result the Stocksigns product range within this sector has grown substantially. Their expertise in signage schemes for these environments has also developed. Education establishments span a wide range of audiences from very young pupils in pre-schools to academic staff in universities: Stocksigns can develop sign systems that can cater for the needs of all these different groups.

For more information on school signage read our previous posts on:

For more information or to order our Signs for Schools Catalogue contact our Sales Team 01737 764764

RIDDOR – new changes published

The new Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations 2013 has now come into force. The HSE consulted on proposals for new, simplified regulations, based on recommendations in the Lofstedt report. Here is an overview of the main changes to the regulations, provided by Barbour EHS

The main changes to the RIDDOR Regulations are:

• A simplified and shortened list of specified reportable injuries (“major injuries”) to workers sustained as a result of a work-related accident.
• A clarified and shortened list of reportable dangerous occurrences (near-miss events).
• A simplified and significantly shortened list of reportable ill-health conditions inworkers (replacing 47 specified ill-health conditions with 8 categories of work related diseases).
• A simplified list of dangerous occurrences within the rail-sector, and removal of the requirement to report suicides on railways.

Summary of RIDDOR Changes.

The regulations have essentially been redrafted with some sections imported from the old regulations into the new structure. Even where requirements are very similar such as in the list of general dangerous occurrences there are subtle differences in wording.
In some cases the use of new words within the regulations will require clarification within the new guidance and it is hoped that this will not leave scope for misinterpretation.
Those with established policies on accident reporting or software tools will need to review their content before October 2013 to ensure continued correlation with the legal requirements.

Further reading