Stallard Kane supports the HSE’s new Metalwork Inspections
You as an employer must provide safety signs if there is a significant risk that can’t be avoided or controlled in any other way, such as through safe systems of work.
There is no need to provide safety signs if they don’t help reduce the risk or if the risk isn’t significant. You should put the appropriate sign in place to warn of danger and make sure that staff are aware of their meaning. To meet your duties, damaged or missing signs should be replaced immediately.
What are the different types of signs and what do you need to know about them?
Signs and labels help you to meet health and safety requirements, and educate, protect, or inform individuals. In a diverse workplace, a sign breaks down language and understanding barriers so that everyone gets the same safety message. Safety signs are not a substitute for other means of controlling risk.
There’s no need to provide safety signs if they don’t help reduce the risk or if it isn’t significant, although certain fire safety signs may have to be displayed under a separate legal provision.
Your risk assessments should pinpoint where you need to place signage. The Health and Safety (Safety Signs and Signals) Regulations 1996 make it clear that safety signs are not a substitute for other means of controlling risks. They are to warn of any remaining significant risks or to instruct employees on the measures they should take in relation to these risks.
Don’t overuse signage as it starts to lose its effectiveness. Be clear and concise in the visual messages you are portraying.
These 4 important safety signs can be broken into categories: Prohibition, Warning, Mandatory and Emergency.
The two other types of signage to understand are:
If you have visually impaired staff, you may need to provide alternative ways to communicate, such as audible instructions during a fire evacuation.
Red is a Safety Colour and must be used for any:
Yellow (or amber) signs are warning signs, meaning to be careful, take precautions or examine:
Blue safety signs mean that a sign is mandatory, and that specific behaviour or action should be carried out:
Green is a safety colour and must be used for:
White is NOT a safety colour but is used:
Black is NOT a safety colour but is used:
Need some new or replacement signs and not sure where to start? We provide a wide range of safety signage, from bespoke branded plaques too easy to fit self-adhesive signs and labels for all your needs. We can help you assess your signage and provide you with a quote for updating it.
To find out more information call our Compliance Team on 01427 420 404 or email email@example.com#OneOfTheTeam
Make sure signs are visible and not faded and replace damaged signage immediately. Although most safety signs are self-explanatory, employees (particularly new, young, or inexperienced ones) may be unfamiliar with them. It’s important that the meaning of any sign is clearly explained, and that employees are aware of the consequences of not following the warning or instruction given by the sign.
If you need help on any health and safety matter, contact your designated Stallard Kane Health & Safety Advisor or, if you don’t currently use our Health & Safety services, call 01427 420 402 or email firstname.lastname@example.org and one of the team will be happy to help.