The importance of Health & Safety signage to your business

In a world governed by Health & Safety regulations it has never been so important to ensure you have the correct signage. Signage is the main way of communicating Health & Safety information to make sure that people understand the risks around them.

Health and safety signs

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) reported that between 1st April 2015 – 31st March 2016 144 workers in the UK  were killed while in the workplace.   This shocking statistic highlights how having the correct signage is crucial in advising people of risks that cannot be controlled or avoided to help prevent accidents.

In November last  year the HSE released their annual report about work related injuries and illness, they found the following statistics:

  • 3 million people suffer from a work related illness
  • Over 621,000 work related injuries
  • 2,515 people died

Despite these alarming figures there has been a downward trend of fatal work related injuries. This is partly due to the safety signs directive being adopted by all European Union member states in 1992. The Health and Safety  (Safety Signs and Signals Regulations) act then adopted these changes in 1996 which required employers to display safety signs to highlight risks that cannot be controlled or avoided.

The Safety Signs and Signals Regulations has had a huge impact in keeping workers and members of the public safe.  Since its introduction there has been a 50% reduction in the number of fatal injuries.

Health & safety signs

As well as this impact on fatalities there is also a link between the introduction of safety signage and a decrease in the number of reported accidents. Keeping people safe begins with alerting them to hazards and dangers around them with easy to understand signage.

We offer a huge range of signs suitable for all situations and environments. Our experienced sales team are on hand to offer expert advice to ensure your signage is fully compliant with current ISO 7010 legislation. Call us now on 01737 774077 or send an email with your enquiry.

It is crucial for employers to display up to date compliant signage. Consequences for the use of non compliant signage range from hefty fines up to prison sentences. More importantly however is injury or loss of life that could occur as a result of incorrect or missing signage.

We have recently celebrated 8 years of working in partnership with RoSPA (The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents) as their recommended signage supplier. We are proud to work alongside them and promote their vital work in keeping people safe through accident prevention.  Find out more information about this here.

 

Shop our extensive signage range now

 

How to determine what signs you need

Our customers frequently ask us what information they need to give when  looking into their signage needs. To help we have put together an infographic showing all of the considerations to take into account when placing your order.

Simply click on the image to enlarge:

Determine the signs you need

If you require any assistance or would like some advice please call a member of our experiences sales team on 01737 772072 or send us an email.

 

 

Fire Action Notices Conveying Evacuation Procedures Effectively

fire action noticesFire action notices can contain several texts which are in common use but may not be appropriate for all circumstances but there are certain messages that should be included. There are four significant areas that need to be addressed.

1.       Raising the Alarm.

This should advise of the most appropriate method of action whether this be by operating the nearest fire alarm call point, calling 999, verbally or by any other alarm procedure used in there evacuation procedure.

2.      Fire Brigade.

The fire brigade is often called automatically through the alarm system, however it may be necessary to call the fire brigade manually. Your Fire Action notice may also give additional information which you would be required to pass on to the operator, such as telephone number and exact location details.

3.       Assembly Point

A blank space is provided for details of the nearest assembly point. An assembly point is usually a static safe area marked with the appropriate signage. For premises that have no clear area to use as a regular assembly point mobile extendable fire assembly point signs can be used to guide occupants to the designated safe area.

4.       Additional Instruction

It is customary to include further instructions such as “do not stop to collect personal belongings” or “ do not return to the building for any reason until authorised to do so”.

More specific information can be included for example there can be precise instructions in buildings which have lifts, or for houses that have multiple occupancy.

 Where should you display your fire action notices?

Best practice suggests fire action notices should be displayed next to every fire alarm call point and next to the final fire exits. This gives the relevant information at a glance to the person raising the alarm and any further action that maybe required.

There are two distinct styles of fire action notice, one the traditional blue and red sign with written instructions and the other incorporating graphic symbols in line with BS EN ISO 7010. Both of which meet current legislation however the graphic symbol version is growing in popularity due to the effectiveness of relaying information quickly through symbols which would be critical in an evacuation situation.

fire action notices

pictorial Fire Action Notices

Summer Safety Signage Audit

Summer Safety Signage Audit

The summer months and the holiday season are the ideal time to carry out a signage audit. Your business premises may be quieter, as staff jet off on their well earned breaks, often leaving car parks and buildings temporarily easier to access. Use this time and the increased access to assess your company signage, making sure signs are present, in good condition and correct to the latest legislation.

Also the summer can be a time when there maybe a need to increase security to your grounds or buildings. Building sites and disused quarries can seem attractive places to play, potentially with tragic consequences, so ensuring your boundary safety signs are all in place becomes critical.

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 byincorrect safety signs - no fire alarm
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 missing safety signs - fire alarmhave 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 done 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.mixing safety signs

Care of your safety Signs

Safety signs over time can become dirty or damaged and several environmental factors can effect 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. If they are illegible and beyond cleaning replace where necessary.
For more information about safety signs or any other signage query please contact our sales team at sales@stocksigns.co.uk

ISO 7010 Safety signs and symbols – Where are we now?

ISO 7010 – Safety Signs Are Changing

Over the next few months we will see a further step in the adoption of a new standard for safety signs as BS ISO 7010 is soon to become BS EN ISO 7010. The change will see safety signs in the workplace move away from being an “International standard” (essentially a recommendation on best practice), to a European norm (meaning the contents of the standard must be written into UK and EU law).

ISO 7010 has been developed to provide consistency in design across the EU. The new designs have now been phased in and all our signs follow The Health & Safety (Safety Signs & Signals) Regulations 1966 and conform to BS ISO 7010 where applicable.

How does ISO 7010 effect my safety signs?

You may have noticed some design changes to the symbols whereas others will look virtually unchanged. Whilst the new symbols will be replacing the old designs, some Health and Safety guidance recommends that the two different types of signage, BS 5499 and EN ISO 7010 should not be mixed in the workplace, so you may want to change your current signage to comply, although for the present both designs will still meet your safety obligations. When looking to purchase new signage, ensure they meet with the new EN ISO 7010 standards.

BS ISO 7010 safety signs

Safety Signs Audit For The New Year

Safety Signs Audit For The New Year

While safety signs may not have been at the top of your Christmas list, this time of year is the perfect time to carry out a signage audit of your premises. The beginning of year is always associated with fresh starts, out with the old and in with the new. We often get renewed energy which gives us the impetus to start new projects or clear the decks in anticipation of what January will bring.

Taking Stock of your Safety Signs

Take time to walk round your premises, it may take a couple of trips round if you have aemergency exit signs 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? 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 done to give you peace of mind. While it isn’t yet a requirement to change all your existing safety signs to the new ISO7010 versions make sure any missing or damaged signs are replaced with the new updated symbols.

Care of your safety Signs

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

multi message construction safety signsSignage Clutter

Have you got too many safety signs? are the messages you are giving out confusing? If it is a high hazard area consider replacing a number of your signs with single multi message signs. Having your safety information in one place will not only look smarter but will help reduce sign blindness- where people are so used to seeing the same signs day in day out they in fact cease to register seeing the signs at all.

For more information about safety signs or any other signage query please contact our sales team sales@stocksigns.co.uk .

Fire Exit Signs and Emergency Escape Signs

 

ceiling mounted fire escape signsJust because there is statutory requirement for all non-domestic premises to have the right fire safety signage, there is no reason that fire exit signs cannot be used imaginatively to fit in with your building design and decoration.

Here are some examples of the different ways that a compliant fire sign can be used.

 1. Wall and ceiling mounted signs are very useful when for example, space is at a premium or there is a low ceiling.

 2. Sign frames can add impact to the sign message. One option is to fit the sign into the appropriate sign frame, which can be suspended or wall mounted.  Alternatively, for a more design conscious solution a Vision MX frame system, which can of course be double sided.

3. Wall mounted projecting signs increase visibility from several directions.
        
4. Sometimes conditions require the use of an extra large sign, particularly in public places. Extended view of up to 40 metres can be achieved with signs 1200 x 400mm in size.
 

fire exit signs

5. Again, constraints of design or purpose may require the use of “portrait” style fire signs, for example multi-storey car parks.
 
6. An innovative aid is the use of fire exit floor graphics as part of a wider safety sign installation.
 
7. Two larger luminaires are available, for when this type of signage is required or chosen. The cylinder range comes in various options for mounting and is an elegant solution. At a very practical level are the BSI certified metal exit signs which are extremely good value for money.
          
8. Photoluminescent signs  are both effective and alternative choices, and can be used with several of the options available to the standard fire signs.
 
emergency escape signs
 
9. Signs for the physically impaired are part of the provision that can be required under the Disability Discrimination Act.  They also show an employers awareness and sensitivity to the needs of this often overlooked section of the community.
 
10. “Tactual” signs are particularly relevant to the visually impaired, with the wide spaced raised text incorporating Braille. Braille signs  fully conforming to BS5499-2:2002 and ISO 7010, as well as Technical Bulletin 24 of the joint Mobility Unit, part of the RNIB.
 
11. The Hospital Sector has developed a range of fire escape signs, specifically for the sector but have proved popular in other fields too.
   

12. Finally there is a range of “Standard Enhanced” signs with clear acrylic and satin chrome panel supports – a very aesthetically pleasing choice, which complements the design aware decor of an office, shop etc. All in all, a much larger selection of fire and emergency escape signs than perhaps one might have imagined. The good news is that Stocksigns can supply all the ranges listed above. Why not think seriously about how you enhance your signage.

fire exit signs 3

ISO 7010 – An Overview

ISO 7010 safety signsISO 7010 – An Introduction

Over the next few months we will see the adoption of a new standard for safety signs as ISO 7010 is soon to become Pr EN 7010. The change will see safety signs in the workplace move away from being an “International standard” (essentially a recommendation on best practice), to a European norm (meaning the contents of the standard must be written into UK and EU law). ISO 7010 has been developed to provide consistency in design across the EU. We will be phasing in the new designs throughout 2011 and you may notice some design changes to the symbols whereas others will look virtually unchanged. Whilst the new symbols will be replacing the old designs, both designs will still meet your safety obligations.

ISO 7010 – An Overview.

In the late seventies, as the European Community was coming into being, it was recognised that with a large migratory workforce within the EU countries, there would be a real problem communicating health and safety issues.

It was decided to create an international standard based on pictograms. This lead to the publishing, in 1984, of the first health and safety standard; ISO 3864-Safety Colours and Safety Signs, which is still current today and is the basis for both ISO 7010 and BS 5499.

Because ISO 3864 was not grounded in law, it did not become established across the EU. So, in 1992, a European Directive based on ISO 3864 was passed, which made it a legal requirement for member states to write the requirements into their countries health and safety legislation, this was EC Directive 92/58/EEC.
In the UK this took the form of the “Health & Safety (Signs and Signals) Regulations 1996.

The Directive was a bit vague regarding the symbols to be used and soon a variety of different symbols had developed across Europe, the “Euro” fire exit symbol being a good example.

The situation regarding these symbols now needed to be rectified.

Here in Britain, this lead to the revision of the previous standard and in 2002, BS5499:2002 Graphical Symbols and Signs, was issued.

The need for correct pictograms across Europe was now evident and so the International Standards Organisation were compelled to update their own standards and so, using BS 5499 as a basis, they split ISO 3864 into two parts:

ISO 3864:2002 – covering shape and colours, as before.
ISO 7010:2003 – covering pictograms.

As previously seen in the Eighties, for these changes to have any impact, it would be necessary to write this standard into law, which is the process we are in the middle of now.

Making ISO 7010 into an EN, means that the status of the standard will change from being a recommendation of best practice, to a European Norm, requiring that the contents of the Standard are written, without change, into all EU countries laws.

This means that there will be a legal requirement for the same sign to be used in every country for the same requirement.
It will mean that a fire exit sign in England will be the same as it would be in France, Spain, Germany or anywhere at all within the EU.

ISO 7010 – A Brief History – milestone timeline

Late seventies – large migratory workforce in the EEC
1978 – BS 5499 – Fire Safety Signs, Notices and Graphic Symbols
1992 – EC Directive 92/58/EEC
1996 – “The Health & Safety (Signs and Signals) Regulations
2002 – BS 5499:2002 – Graphical Symbols and Signs
2003 – ISO 3864:2002 and ISO 7010:2003ISO 7010, no smoking sign, prohibition safety signs

our new 2011 catalogue is has been completely updated to include the NEW ISO 7010 safety symbols