What Is the Main Purpose of Safety Signs?

Giuliano Marinho

Giuliano Marinho, July 6, 2021

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What Is the Main Purpose of Safety Signs?

Five Types of Workplace Safety Signs to Protect Your Business

Some companies post OSHA signs to comply with regulations and avoid costly penalties and business interruptions. Others recognize the vital purpose of these signs: creating a secure environment for workers, clients and the public. Safety signs identify hazards and make people aware of situations where caution, quick thinking and rapid responses might be necessary.

When an accident occurs in your workplace, you lose time, money and hard-earned morale. Without a comprehensive safety sign program, you may also lose valuable employees or customers. When planning your safety sign strategy, remember these five essential types of messaging:

  • Danger
  • Caution
  • Instruction
  • Prohibition
  • Warning

Savvy Business Owners Use Mandatory & Voluntary Signage

OSHA regulations mandate that businesses post danger, caution and instructional signs wherever needed. Your facility is better protected when you also include signs that (1) prohibit dangerous items or behaviors, and (2) warn people about conditions that could cause injury or death. To comply with safety regulations and prevent jobsite, tradeshow or sporting event accidents, deploy these vital messages throughout your facility.

Danger Signs: Bold red, white and black danger signs warn passersby of imminent risk of injury or death. OSHA requires that businesses post these messages when extreme hazards exist. Danger signs point out things like “high voltage,” “corrosive chemicals,” “blasting,” and other risky situations. They also identify restricted entry areas and announce the need for special equipment.

Caution Signs: Yellow, white and black OSHA signs call out unsafe conditions or practices resulting in injury. Examples include warnings about slipping hazards, uneven walkways, low headroom, periodic flooding and potentially dangerous equipment.

Instructional Signs: Also required by OSHA regulation, green and white instructional signs usually convey safety-related messages. When workplace accidents or injuries happen, employees can follow these signs to summon help or locate defibrillators and other medical equipment. Instructional signage quickly identifies first aid kits, eyewash stations, personal protective equipment and sanitation supplies.

Prohibition Signs: In addition to mandatory signage, many business operators choose to post signs banning behaviors or forbidding inappropriate items. Prohibition signs feature a red slash through a circle and are commonly used to restrict smoking, alcohol and cell phone use, since these activities distract workers and could lead to accidents. These “off-limits” signs are also used to limit venue entry and prevent equipment damage by keeping food, drinks or open flames out of the workplace.

Warning Signs: Orange and black warning signs take OSHA caution messages a step further. Business operators post these signs in areas where the risk of injury requires heightened awareness and careful behavior. Warning signs draw attention to equipment injury potential or caution people about confined workspaces, traffic hazards or risks like explosives, radioactive materials or biohazards.

Turn Fence Screens Into Custom Safety Signs

Identify safety hazards and encourage onsite compliance with SONCO printed fence screens and barricade covers. Our standard workplace safety screen combines multiple tin signs and OSHA messages into a single sign with bold, high-impact graphics. With one large, attractive sign, you’ll declutter your jobsite and draw attention to critical safety imperatives.

Our in-house designers understand the purpose of safety signs, and they are available to create custom safety signage for your event venue, workplace or construction site. We’ll help you create perimeter fence screens and barricade covers with your company logo and custom safety instructions. All SONCO safety signage features bilingual messages and internationally recognized safety symbols.

Contact SONCO to order money-saving OSHA signs, request bulk pricing or download fence screen templates for your custom safety signs.

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