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

 

The Top 10 Safety Signs

top 10 safety signsThe Top 10 safety Signs

Every non domestic premise in the UK is governed by safety legislation and as such will have a need for safety signs. Safety signage is a cost effective and efficient way to warn and educate people to the particular risks associated with a building. While there are some signs, such as fire signs, which will be common to all buildings, there are many others which will only be relevant in certain situations. The way to determine the signs needed should be by way of a full risk assessment and perhaps a sign site survey.

Below we have put together our top 10 list of the typical signs likely to be found in businesses and public buildings, but please bear in mind that every building has different requirements and signage should be judged on individual risk assessments.


health and safety law poster


1. UK Health and Safety Law Poster.

There is a legal requirement to display this poster or distribute equivalent leaflet.

 

 

 

fire action notice2. Fire Action Notices

These are needed to show actions necessary in an emergency such as sounding a fire alarm,

 

 

 

 

 

fire exit sign3. Fire Exit and Emergency Escape signs

These are used to indicate emergency routes and emergency escapes. Used to mark safe means of escape.

ire equipment signs4. Fire Equipment Signs

These are used to mark the location of fire fighting and fire safety equipment.

 

 

 

 

first aid signs5. First Aid Signs

Signs showing the location of first aid facilities. No longer a legal requirement but the Electric Shock Emergency Action sign is also recommended.

 

 

 

 

no smoking signs5. No Smoking

July 2007 saw a total smoking ban in all enclosed public places, work places and certain vehicles in the UK. The smoke free legislation means it is an offence not to display the appropriate No Smoking Signs, resulting in fines up to £1000.

 

 

 

slipper floor signs7. Wet Floors

These need to be used wherever a slippery area is not cordoned off. Most premises will have routine cleaning operations which may leave areas vulnerable. Lightweight stands holding double-sided signs are readily available.

 

 

 

 

mind the step signs 8. Obstacles or Dangerous Locations.

Most buildings however well designed will have localized hazards, the most common of which are trip hazards and low hanging obstacles. So in joint 8th place we have the trip hazard, mind the step and mind your head signs.

caustic, hazardous chemical signs9. Chemical Storage.

Where hazardous cleaning chemicals are stored, apart from keeping the store locked, a suitable warning notice should be posted if it is considered this would help to reduce injury.

first aid for burns posters10. Kitchens/Catering

Most premises have kitchen or catering facilities. Scalds and burns are common, a poster showing recommended action is advisable.

Safety Sign Audit – A safe way to start the year and burn some Christmas Calories too

Well the New Year is here, and it’s time to burn off that extra mince pie, so what better way to do that than by giving your premises a safety once over this week. So here is a timely reminder of why you should give your facilities a safety sign MOT.

Time for a safety signs MOT?

safety sign auditAs 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 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.

Read the original article in full to learn how to walk your premises and carry our a safety sign audit (you may even burn some calories too)

Fire Exit Signs Meanings Tutorial

fire exit signs

To accompany our post about understanding fire exit signs we have put together this short tutorial on fire exit signs their meanings and where to position them.

For larger projects or new builds you may wish to organise a site survey. If you would like further advice please call our Sales Team on 01737 774072 or send us an email.

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

Everything you always wanted to know about COSHH (but were too afraid to ask!) – by RoSPA

Spill kit2 COSHH

A Guide to COSHH – A Guest post from RoSPA

If you’ve ever had any dealings with any aspect of Health and Safety, the chances are you’ve come across the acronym COSHH or one of the COSHH symbols. However, you may still be uncertain about what COSHH actually stands or what the symbols mean. Don’t worry though, help is at hand with our informative short guide to COSHH.

 What does COSSH stand for?

COSHH stands for ‘Control of Substances Hazardous to Health’ and under the Control of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulations 2002, employers need to either prevent or reduce their workers’ exposure to substances that are hazardous to their health.

 What are ‘substances hazardous to health?’

 Broadly speaking, substances hazardous to health include any substances that could cause harm to employees, contractors and other people. These hazardous substances can come in many different forms, including:

  • Chemicals
  • Fumes
  • Dusts
  • Vapours
  • Mists
  • Nanotechnology
  • Gases
  • Asphyxiating gases
  • Biological agents

 

 What do the COSHH symbols stand for?

The COSHH symbols are a set of international symbols that allow you to understand the different hazards within your organisation. They have been in use since 1967, with each symbol representing a different type of hazard. In 2009 the symbols were updated to reflect the international nature of hazardous substances. See the chart below for a guide to the new international hazard symbols:

COSHH symbols

COSHH Training

COSHH training is designed to safeguard your employees, teaching them to to identify, measure and control the exposure to harmful substances. A COSHH training course should provide you with:

 

  • An understanding of how and which substances can harm health
  • Knowledge and definitions of exposure limits
  • Skills to understand exposure and to conduct risk assessments
  • A greater understanding of practical control measures and safe systems of work

 Where can I find out more?

The HSE has a free downloadable guide called ‘Working with substances hazardous to health’ – which is a brief overview of COSHH.

The RoSPA Workplace Safety Blog also contains further information on COSHH, as well as other useful posts on all matters relating to occupational health and safety.

 warning signs and guide

See our offer on this COSHH information pack

Help Your Staff to Recycle – hints & tips for recycling in the office

paper recycling3 Ways to Make Recycling Simple.

This next article in our series of posts to support ‘Go Green Week’ takes a look at recycling and advocates the use of recycling signs.

We are all getting used to the mantra “Reduce, Reuse and Recycle” but ‘recycling’, the third in the going greener hiearchy, is often the activity that can be done very half heartedly. We are not talking about the large scale collection of scrap metal from manufacturing processes (where generally there is financial benefit hiding behind the ‘green banner’) but the small scale semi-domestic recycling which builds-up within businesses e.g. paper, water, food containers etc. In a company environment people are generally keen to recycle but no one really wants to take responsibility. Particularly in smaller companies the office/kitchen recycling is often left until the mountain of jars and milk bottles becomes unbearable and someone gives in and takes it to the recycling skips, just before the point that ‘Rentokil’ are called in.

The trick is make the whole process simple. There are three essential steps to hassle free recycling in the office.

  1. Create a Rota
  2. Make it simple, provide sorting at source
  3. Provide clear instructions

You are unlikely to get a rush of volunteers to help but a simple rota for emptying the recycling will mean it gets done and everyone will feel they have done their bit. Endless memos nagging staff to comply to your waste management program are likely to breed more resentment than co-operation, so instead opt for simple sorting systems at source and clear recycling signage, which will give instructions and gently remind people of their responsibilities. recycling signsStocksigns has a huge range of energy conservation and recycling signs to help your company on its way to go greener. We would love to hear any tips you have used in your company to promote a greener business jgodden@stocksigns.co.uk

Winter Safety Products, Be Safe in the Big Freeze

icy car park, ice hazardProtect Your Premises With Winter Safety Products.

With the wintry weather set to continue for a few weeks yet, it’s time to take extra safety precautions. The councils do their best to grit and salt our roads, to protect road users as best they can. But what happens at the travellers’ destinations? Many road users are on their way to work and schools, where they encounter private roads, driveways and car parks, all outside the councils jurisdiction. It is here in these close to home places where most accidents occur and quite often these are the same places that do not get the safety treatment they deserve.

Don’t let your premises, car park or pathways add to this winter’s accident statistics.salt grt bin Clear car parks and pathways of ice and snow, and regularly grit with salt to stop them re-freezing. When clearing snow ensure you have the right tools. A Snow pusher is lightweight and has a bi-directional blade making clearing of large areas quick and efficient. Products such as Ice Melt will clear icy patches quickly, with no damagede-icing salt to carpets, floors or plants.

Once staff and visitors are inside your premises the hazard doesn’t stop, floors in receptions, entry points and non carpeted corridors become slippery even with relatively low footfall levels. Make sure these trouble spots are regularly mopped, adequate door matting is available and suitable slip hazard signage used.

Winter Hazard Zones Check List

  • Grit all car parks.
  • Ensure all external paths are cleared and regularly gritted.
  • Areas with high footfall such as entrances and smoking shelters, need extra attention.
  • Hall ways, entrance lobbies and receptions will become wet and slippery, ensure areas are mopped regularly and adequate warning signs used.
  • Check stocks of salt and grit.
  • Install speed limit signage in large car parks and driveways.

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

Door signs how to choose the best for your business – a video guide

Door Signs

door signs, door name plate, door slider, occupied, vacantDoor signs can be customised with your logo or your corporate fonts. They create a unified design throughout the whole building and door signs help reinforce your company or brand values. We can offer you a huge variety of internal signs in materials including metal, plastics, glass and layered effects. Many have matching interior panels, signposts and external signs. Call us to discuss your ideas, and we can help guide you towards the best solution for your building. Visit our You Tube channel for more films about gettingthe nest from you signs http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ocQDwtZ8QZE&feature=plcp

Lowongan kerja terbaru

What size sign should I use? A viewing distance guide

What size signs should I use? – Viewing Distances For Signs

We are often asked by customers what size sign they should be using, particularly with regard to safety signs. The truth is there is no hard and fast rule for size of sign and viewing distances. Currently there is no legislation covering this aspect of safety signs and symbols, and common sense has to be used to make a judgement. The viewing distance for signs is dependant on many factors.

  • Ambient Light Conditions
  • Obstructions
  • Height of the sign
  • The colours of the sign design
  • The style and size of the fonts used

However to help in choosing the right signs and make more of an informed decision, the following illustrations will serve as a guide. If you would still like some assistance call our sales team on 01737 77 40 72, or alternatively a site survey  of your premises by one of our team, can give you peace of mind, ensuring you have the right signs for your building.

what size signs - viewing distances for fire signs

How to Apply Vinyl Graphics

 

This article is dedicated to the different application methods used for applying/installing self adhesive vinyl signs and window graphics. Many of our safety sign ranges come with a self adhesive vinyl option making

frosted vinyl screen, glass highlighting

them very versatile and easy to install. We also offer a range of frosted vinyl window graphics in both standard and custom-made designs. Glass Highlighting can also help you comply with Regulation 14 of the Workplace (Health, Safety and Welfare) Regulations 1992. The Regulation requires the marking of windows and glass doors to make them conspicuous.

  

  

  How to apply your vinyl signs and graphics

How to apply vinyl graphics

Before applying any self adhesive graphics make sure that the application surface is clean and free from contaminants. To apply your self adhesive graphics, use one of the following methods:

For Small Sizes (up to approximately 20 x 20cm)

1. You will need a squeegee.  ( a small rigid plastic card designed for sign applicating, if you can’t get one, a small professional window cleaning one will do, or even an old credit card)

2. Remove the backing paper from the face material.

3. Position the sticker/sign on the surface and press in place with finger tips.

4. Apply the sticker to the surface with squeegee, using overlapping strokes. Puncture any air bubbles with a needle and press in place.

mobile phones, prohibition, safety signs

For Medium Sizes

1. You will need a squeegee (see above).

2. Remove 3-5cm of the backing paper from one edge of the sticker and fold back.

3. Position the sticker to the surface and press the exposed adhesive area in place with finger tips.

4. Apply the sticker to the surface with squeegee, using overlapping strokes, removing the backing paper little by little with the other hand puncture any air bubbles with a needle and press in place.

Wet application method for large sizes

1. You will need a squeegee (see above), sponge or cloth, water plus a little liquid detergent (i.e. washing up liquid), agitated to produce foam bubbles.

2. Temperature of the application surface and in the workshop should be 15°C or above.frosted glass, room divider, glass highlighting

3. Wet the application surface entirely with foam bubbles.

4. Remove the backing paper, keeping the sticker flat.

5. Apply the sticker to the wet surface and bring into position.

6. Remove any excess foam bubbles from underneath the sticker with a squeegee, using light pressure in overlapping strokes, working from the centre. Dry the sticker with a cloth.

7. Secure the sticker to the surface with a squeegee, using overlapping strokes and firm pressure, paying particular attention to the edges, to ensure a firm bond.

8. When possible, check and re-squeegee firmly after 24 hours.

*note – With this application method ultimate adhesion of the sticker/sign is reached later than with a dry method. The sticker/sign will obtain ultimate adhesion about 24-48 hours after application.

Your Signs Catalogue

safety signs catalogueThe New Stocksigns 2012 Safety Signs Catalogue

We have been working hard to bring you the widest range of high quality signage products in 2012.  The Catalogue has over 30,000 standard signs for you to choose from and a custom section that aims to provide inspiration for choosing signs from proven designs created for others and steer you to design your own should you wish. This year we have extended our capabilities and product range even further to include LED signs.

 

 What’s new in this years sign catalogue?

Messagemaker display led Our recent acquisition of Messagemaker Display ltd has enabled us to bring to you a brand new range of programmable LED signs available off the shelf. The new range includes static and programmable display systems in a range of sizes and text colours. These easy to use signs add high impact to your advertising or information messages. See pages 282-283 of our new catalogue for more information.  

To compliment our 3D pictorial signs we have created some pictorial stickers for displaying on cupboards and drawers. These signs can aid recognition and help dementia sufferers and those with learning difficulties. See page 86 of our new catalogue.

traffic signs

We are continually looking for ways to make the catalogue as easy as possible to use. This year we have introduced many more photographs so you can see exactly how best to display and locate your signs. Listening to our customers has led us to re-arrange some of the pages to help you find the right signs more quickly. See pages 202-203 for an example.

 

 How to get the best out of your signs catalogue

Our many years in the signage industry has allowed us to develop an easy ordering system to help you decipher the complicated world of safety signs and general signage. The catalogue itself is divided into two main sections. The first section covers our standard signs, which is made up of all the various safety signs, traffic signs and information signs available off the shelf. The second section displays some of our products and capabilities for creating custom-made signs. This section is meerly intended to be a guide, to give you a small insight into what we can create for you, and by no means includes everything, so if you don’t see what you want, please contact our sales team.

Safety Signs and Standard Information Signs Section

Our standards signs section is packed with over 30,000 safety signs and general information signs so, to make choosing your signs a little less overwhelming, we have lots of hints and information to help you make an informed decision. We show many of our signs in working situations so you can best see how the safety message can be applied. We have included as many facts and figures as we can to educate and promote safety awareness. We always include the necessary legislation covering the safety issue, so you can be sure you will be meeting your legislative obligations. Our easy reference price grids make ordering simple and our “have you seen” cross references make sure you won’t miss anything you might need.

Custom-made Signs Section

2012 custom made signs spread

Our custom made signs section has been designed to educate and inspire. We give you hints and tips on how best to choose your signage products in terms of size, design and materials. We point out the potential pitfalls and provide solutions for getting the optimum results from your signs. We highlight the benefits of different styles of product. Each of our product sections has some general information to help you decide if you are looking at the right products for your needs. Also for each product section we have tried to include as many photographs as possible, not only to give you some idea of the depth of our ranges but also to inspire you. Lastly, where we can squeeze them in, we have included customer testimonials to promote our service, so you don’t have to just take our word for it, you are in experienced and safe hands choosing Stocksigns.

The catalogue is designed to give you the best choice of products backed by relevant information but don’t feel you have to go it alone, our Sales Team are always ready to guide you and help you get the best from your 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 .

Safety Signs – RoSPA’s Business case for Safety

 Roger Bibbings, RoSPA’s Occupational Safety Adviser talks about how, during these times of austerity, now is not the time to cut back, but instead invest in health and safety. Safety Signs can be a key part of this.

Safety Signs

Safety signs are a cost effective way of enhance your safety policy. They can be used to warn of inherent dangers, they can be used to promote safety awareness and used as training aids in safety training. A site survey from Stocksigns can help ensure your premises meet current legislation and best practice.

Where to use Emergency Exit Signs

fire exit signsWhich Emergency Exit Sign to use where?

We are often asked by our customers which fire exit sign they should use where and with which arrow? This simple guide will help you to select the right signs for your premises and keeping within current legislation. The directional arrows are designed to give visual instructions of the safest route to take in the event of an emergency.

A site survey of your premises can help you ensure your emergency escape plans have the correct signage and can form part of your safety risk assessment.

Below shows the directional arrows and their meanings on Emergency Exit Signs

 fire exit signs Progress down from here    
 fire exit signs Progress forward from here or progress forward and through here. The most commonly used emergency escape sign often seen above doorways.    
 fire exit signs Progress to the right from here    
 fire exit signs Progress to the left from here    
 fire exits Progress down and right from here    
 fire exit signs Progress down and left from here    
 fire exit signs Progress up and right from here    
 fire exit signs Progress up and left from here    

Blogs That Follow

A Surplus of Signs or a Safety Necessity? Safety Signs Clutter Debate

Safety signs clutter?

There has been much talk recently about signs pollution, the proliferation of signs all over our town and countryside, from high street to motorway, from factory to farm. Which not only can blight our landscape or built environment, but also cause confusion by virtue of the sign’s own cluttering promiscuity.

Does this apply to health and safety signs?

Not so, in our view. First, the very purpose of properly located and appropriate safety signage is to protect staff and visitors on your premises, when all other means to mitigate a risk has been considered an actioned.  In this case “familiarity does NOT breed contempt – rather the continual and consistent viability of such safety aids increases awareness and comprehension of the potential dangers and the means of avoiding or evading them. This is not just a negative “do not” approach as is evident from essential use of fire and emergency exit signs in their various forms.

Secondly, the key to effective health and safety signage starts with the comprehensive assessment of the risks in a workplace and, where these can not be avoided, the selection ofmulti message construction safety signs the most appropriate signs – which in many cases, separate safety messages can be incorporated in one multi-purpose sign, so quite legitimately saving space and money.

Safety Signs Training

A further crucial ingredient is the general level of safety awareness that is developed within your organisation, and in particular, the education and training of staff with respect to safety signs. Here, there are a number of  aides, such as pocket guides (for example, these can be included in an induction pack) and the Health and Safety Law Poster safety pocket guidesthat are in any event a legal requirement to display.

In all these areas Stocksigns can help, although ultimately, of course the responsibility lies with you. Our advice, a combination of physical surveys and the wide range of signs on offer, will eliminate the over-use of signs, but protect the organisation, and its employees and visitors, which after all, is the whole point.

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

Engraved Tags – How to use Engraved Tags?

 

   engraved tags

 When should Engraved Tags be used?

In addition to the commonly used situations engraved tags can be used in a number of areas where conventional labelling systems may not be appropriate such as:

  •  If  the surface area isn’t suitable for good or strong adhesion with labels.
  • If  the Surface area is too small and cannot accommodate the label size.
  • If the area is congested which could cause an obstructed view of the label.
  • If Labels need to be frequently changed or are in cycles or rotations.
  • If  the Surface area has a temperature that exceeds 160°F which will interfere with the adhesiveness of most labels. 

Often pipes or pipe valves don’t have sufficient surface area for adequate labelling. A valve tag can be used to display all the necessary identification information or safety data and then can be easily attached to the area.

 Engraved Tags – What Information Should Be Included on Valve Tags?

The information to be included on Valve Tags is completely dependent on the use of the valve, its situation. There are no hard and fast rules or formal industry standards. The key how ever is to develop the most logical system for your own use. Tags give a convenient way of labelling but space will still be limited so the use of abbreviations is common place. A system of colour coding can also be employed to match standard pipeline identification colours.

Some suggestions for valve tag information are:

 •  Pipe Contents  i.e. compressed air, oil water

 •  Valve Identifier – often a system using numbers and letters for easy identification

 •  Serial Number (we can supply sequential numbered discs)

 •  Valve Function

 •  Normal Position of the Valve, indicating open and closed positions etc. 

 •  Type of Valve Actuator

Read more on Stocksigns’ engraved tags

Viewing Distances For Safety Signs – a Simple Guide

emergency exit signsThe optimum viewing distances for safety signs depends largely on the size of font used, the position and to some degree the font style and colours used.

For escape route signage risk assessments should be carried out where appropriate and reference to BS 5499, Part 4 : 2000 Safety signs, including fire safety signs. Code of practice for escape route signing should be made.

Our Installation guide is for guidance only and your unique premises and building usage should also be taken into consideration. For further advice about viewing distances for safety signs speak to our sales staff on 01737 764764.

Viewing Distances for Safety Signs – A visual Guide

safety signs installation guide

Recommended installation heights:

Above doors:-         2m – 2.5m from floor level to base of sign

Directional wall fixed signs:-      1.4m-1.7m from floor level to base of sign.

Emergency Way Guidance using Photoluminescent Material

Photoluminescent way guidance

This photo was taken in the stairwell here at Stocksigns illustrating the intensity of the luminosity of Hilume.

In situations of emergency evacuation, especially when confronted by power failure, a way guidance system using photoluminescent tapes, signs and markers will help to indicate clearly defined escape routes, saving critical time for the evacuation of the building.

BS 5266-6: 1999, is a Code of Practice for non-electrical low mounted way guidance marking using a photoluminescent system. It recommends how to plan, design, install and maintain the system when used in conjunction with powered emergency lighting. The use of this standard, combines with BS ISO 16069:2004, Graphical symbols-Safety signs – Safety way guidance systems and BS 5499-4: 2000, Code of Practice for escape route signs, gives the answers to most questions that could be asked from those contemplating installing a photoluminescent way guidance system.

The installation of a photolumiescent way guidance system does not replace the use of powered emergency lighting when this is required, but compliments its existence. For a satisfactory performance, photoluminescent materials require initial activation from a good light source.

Fire Extinguisher Identification

Fire Extinguisher identification signsFire Extinguisher Identification to BS EN3 and BS 7863

Under BS EN 3 operative from the 1st January 1997, all new certified fire extinguishers used in European Union countries must feature red bodies. In line with familiar UK practice, BS 7863 allows manufacturers to affix coloured identification panels on or above the operating instructions covering no more than 5% of the body surface area and visible through a horizontal arc of 180 degrees when the extinguisher is mounted.

The new harmonised European standard on fire extinguishers – BS EN3 –  which came into effect in 1st January 1997, provides a single standard for fire extinguishers across Europe. It replaced the old British Standard BS 5423, which has now been withdrawn.

BS EN3 is the standard now used for the specification, manufacturing and purchase of extinguishers in the UK. An additional standard BS 7863 details the revised colour coding system and supplements BS EN3.

BS EN3 is not retrospective and pre-existing extinguishers do not need to be replaced with extinguishers to this new standard. However, any replacements as a result of damagefire extinguisher location panel, wear or un-serviceability or new extinguishers will need to meet this new, later standard.While BSEN3 has now been in place for a number of years Understanding the colours and codes should be part of your regular health and safety training and form part of your new staff induction programme. There are a number of resources such as Fire Extinguisher Colour Guide Code Charts and Fire Extinguisher colour code guide pocket guides that can serve as staff information points and training aids. Fire Extinguisher location panels can aid your routine premises maintenance. As well as providing information on the use of the particular fire extinguisher mounted they also give a visual warning as to when the extinguisher has been used and not replaced.

The New Standard Fire Extinguisher Standard
The main differences between the old and new standards are:

  • A minimum of 95% of the extinguisher body must be red
  • Zones of colour, indicating the contents of the extinguisher, are permitted
  • The markings on the extinguisher must follow a specified layout
  • Pictograms are used indicating the type of fires that the extinguisher is suitable for
  • A minimum body shell thickness is specified
  • Minimum fire performance ratings for the size of the extinguisher are specified
  • Operating temperatures of some extinguishers are increased
  • Some discharge times are increased

Although there are many technical changes and the improvements in the new standard, the most noticeable change is to the colour of the extinguisher bodies.

fire extinguisher identification guide

Fire Extinguisher Colour Guide Code

Fire Extinguisher Colours and Codes

Understanding the colours and codes should be part of your regular health and safety training and form part of your new staff induction programme. There are a number of resources such as Fire Extinguisher Colour Guide Code Charts and Fire Extinguisher colour code guide pocket guides that can serve as staff information points and training aids. In the UK we were used to a system of using the colour of the body of the extinguisher to indicate its contents. However, this system has been peculiarly British with all extinguishers in Europe being coloured completely red.

Since extinguisher colour is no longer used to identify the type of the extinguisher, it falls to the standard pictograms to illustrate the types of fire that extinguisher can be used on. The pictograms are: Fire Extinguisher Types Pictogram

Class A fires involving organic solids; e.g. wood, paper
Class B fires involving flammable liquids
Class C fires involving flammable gases
Class F fires involving cooking oil and fat

A concession was made in this latest standard for a small zone of colour to be available on the body of the extinguisher to further help identify the contents of the extinguisher. A colour zone of up to 5% of the surface area of the extinguisher can be positioned on the top half of the front of the extinguisher body and be visible from 180 degrees. The British Standard BS 7863 outlines the colours that can be used in this way and follows the colour coding that has been used for many years. In addition, there is now a new colour for the Wet Chemical extinguisher (see guide above). The colour codes are:

Red – Water
Cream – Foam
Blue – Powder
Black – Carbon Dioxide
Canary Yellow – Wet Chemical

A further effect of the latest standard is that customised colours (most commonly chromed stainless steel) are no longer allowed; although, as there is no immediate need to change these extinguishers, they (and particularly the stainless extinguishers) may well be in use for some considerable time.

 

Replacement of Extinguishers
Even though pre-existing extinguishers do not need to be replaced, the gradual appearance of the new, latest standard extinguishers alongside older types may cause some confusion. The continued presence of other coloured extinguishers in an area may suggest to some users that the red extinguishers will contain water but this might not be the case, with potentially serious consequences.

Everyone should now what to do in the event of a fire and this includes being able to select the appropriate type of extinguisher to use. To reduce the chances of confusion, mixing new and old standard extinguishers in the same area or building should be avoided.

Note also that the British Standard on servicing BS5306: Part 4 states that all extinguishers installed in any one building or single occupancy should have the same method of operation and, if intended for the same function, should all be similar in shape, appearance and colour.

Summary for Fire Extinguisher Identification

  • Ensure that all new extinguishers obtained comply with BS EN3
  • Ensure that everyone is able to identify the different types of fire extinguisher and their respective use through training & Guides
  • Provide information on the colour standards for fire extinguishers
  • Clearly sign extinguishers and their use with fire safety equipment signs
  • Do not mix extinguishers conforming to the old and new standards
  • Do not mix extinguishers which have different operating methods

Stocksigns has the largest range of fire fighting equipment signs on the market for more information on these and our other safety signs why not order our safety signs catalogue or call our Sales Team on 01737 77 40 72.

Where to use Electrical Emergency Luminaires

emergency door lightingElectrical Emergency Luminaires – Joanna Godden

Emergency lighting is designed to illuminate automatically the emergency escape route (i.e. staircases, landings, passageways etc.) upon failure of the supply to the normal artificial lighting. The emergency lighting must comply with BS 5266: 2005. It is vital that emergency lighting comes on if the normal lighting fails. It needs to be sufficiently bright, illuminated for enough time, and the light sources so positioned that the staff and visitors of a building can be evacuated safely in an emergency

Siting of Luminaires

Luminaires should be sited in the following positions:

  • At each exit door
  • At each intersection of corridors
  • At each change of direction
  • Close to each staircase
  • Close to any change in floor level
  • Close to fire equipment and alarm call point locations
  • At locations that adequately illuminate emergency escape and safety signs

Maintained & Non-maintained Systems.

Non-maintained systems are used in buildings with a limited occupation time, such as offices and shops, and only operate when the power fails. In general, Maintained systems are required for places of entertainment and licensed premises and can be on all the time from normal mains supply, remaining on when the power fails.

electrical emergency luminaires

For more information contact our sales team on Tel 01737 77 40 72 or sales@stocksigns.co.ukelectrical emergency luminaireelectrical emergency luminaire