We often get asked by our customers ‘How do I know how many signs my building needs?’Although there is no hard and fast answer to this, customers must make sure that their building signage is compliant with current the current health and safety legislation.
The number of signs required by a business is dependent on certain factors such as the size of the building, the use of the building and the number of employees and visitors If your building is a commercial premise then you are legally required to undertake a fire risk assessment to allow you to identify any hazards or risks in the building. You can undertake the assessment yourself (if you have expertise or the time to investigate the legal requirements) or you can appoint a fire safety officer. This assessment will allow you to identify fire hazards, identify people who are at risk, devise an emergency plan and evaluate and reduce risks. The fire risk assessment will help you in determining how many signs you require for your building.
How big is the building?
This may be an obvious factor, the larger the building the more signs may be required. How many entrance and exit points does your building have? This will determine how many fire exit signs will be required for example there needs to be a fire exit sign above every doorway where there is more than one exit point. There also needs to be a fire door sign for every fire door in the building.
How complicated is the internal design of the building? This will determine if you require wayfinding signage to help employees and visitors navigate their way around your building.
How is the building used?
The use of your building will also have an impact on the type of signage you require. Certain businesses will have more hazards associated with them for example in a factory environment. There is likely to be heavy machinery which will require hazard signs to highlight risks such as noise and fast moving parts. You will also require mandatory signs to advise what kind of personal protective equipment (PPE) is to be worn such as eye protection.
Is your building open to the general public? If so increased safety signage may be required to highlight risk and dangers to visitors. Increased way-finding signage may be required to safely and efficiently guide visitor traffic through the building.
Who will use the building?
You must also consider the needs of employees and visitors who enter your building. As part of the Disability Discrimination Act (DDA) there must now be reasonable adjustments to buildings to assist disabled persons. This will range from braille and tactile signage to disabled refuge points. Age is another consideration. Schools will need age appropriate and easy to understand signage, we supply primary and secondary school signs in a range of colours. Likewise consideration must be given to older generations and people suffering from dementia. We offering a range of 3D pictorial signs which use bold colours and strong images to produce highly recognisable door signs.
So how can you make sure you have the appropriate number of signs?
There are a number of methods you can use to ensure your building has the correct signage. Make sure you include signage in all aspects of your company risk assessments. Wherever a risk has been identified, ask yourself if a sign could help reduce risk, or significantly raise awareness of that risk.
Using building plans and drawings of your premises can provide a systematic method of determining the signage you require; similarly an audit of all the possible routes of access and working spaces can identify problem areas. Our previous post on the top 10 most common safety signs will give you a starting point.
For complete peace of mind we are able to offer a site survey service. We can give expert advice on your buildings specific signage needs to ensure that you are compliant with the latest legislation.
For more information please contact us on 01737 774077 or send us an email.