From the basic “Watch your step” to “Hazardous chemicals”, we know safety signs are a vital consideration for workers and the general public alike. It is incumbent on employers, property owners and tenants to assess what could go wrong and then protect themselves with adequate safety signs to make sure nothing untoward happens! The help provided by a good signage company in this regard is invaluable.
So, who’s who?
Safety Sign Regulations
The major players and deciding bodies for signage regulations sound like a mouthful indeed. FBSA are simply concerned with signage specifically related to fire warning and safety, including that appearing on firefighting equipment. The real puzzle is understanding the OSHA- ANSI references which appear on safety signs.
OSHA – Occupational Health and Safety Act, is a South African government run public health agency wielding regulatory and enforcement clout over the workplace.
ANSI – American National Standards Institute, is an independent American company from which three important standards for the design of accident prevention signs, labels, and tags have been adopted by OSHA. Now falling under ANSI Z353 (2011), eight signage classifications for safety signs include: caution, danger, directional arrow signs, fire safety, general safety, notices, warning and special signs as well as text and sign size and viewing distance standards are included in OSHA standards.
The bottom line? Anything that meets OSHA standards for safety signs today will automatically have incorporated the ANSI standards.
Facing an ever-growing influx of foreign nationals where language becomes problematic and given that there are literacy issues in many high-hazard forms of employment, the ANSI standards per se:- designs, colours and tags promote consistency, less need for words and proven international symbolism, facilitate improved comprehension.
Benefits of safety signs:
- Critical information is provided for safe decision making
- Graphic symbols improve hazard communication to foreign language persons
- Meet the “adequate warnings” criteria as established by the past thirty years of case law
Rest assured that Signkor makes it a breeze for you to be compliant. That’s one good thing about regulated signage – no need for you to decide on size, text font, layout, colour or design.
Look out for follow up articles on the different types of safety signage and placement of safety signs.