Mandatory Signs At The Workplace

A workplace is a public place where different types of people meet for various activities. Whether it’s a corporate office; a factory or a warehouse, there are always people who are either employees, employers, vendors, customers or visitors and so on.

Understandably, the workplace can also become one of the most hazardous places because of unforeseen accidents that may take a heavy toll on public life. Proper risk management is therefore essential and one of the major components of this is to install adequate and appropriate mandatory signs all over the place with relevant messages.

What are Mandatory Signages?

Mandatory signage is a lucid way of conveying standard safety instructions to the general public in the workplace. It usually comprises symbols or pictograms that are internationally accepted as safety and preventive messages. The signages typically recommend or prohibit certain actions for the safety of the public.

A typical mandatory sign has the pictogram or symbol in white colour over a blue background. The standard specification clearly mentions that the blue background must cover at least fifty percent of the total space of the signage.

Any text or words must be placed using black lettering. Mandatory signs remind regular employees and visitors at the workplace of the rules and regulations they must follow while entering, working or leaving so as to create and sustain a safer working environment.

Types of Mandatory Signages

In the workplace, there are typically three types of signages that are commonly used.

The first type comprises signages with pictures or symbols such as just internationally recognized sign for ‘no smoking’, ‘no entry’ etc.

The second type uses only texts such as ‘exit only’ while the third type includes short messages such as ‘no helmet, no entry’ or ‘stairs / elevator / escalator ahead’ with the relevant pictorial representation.

Using pictures is always recommended as visuals are more attractive and can be related by almost everybody around.

Signage Category according to Shape and Colour

Signages can again be of different types according to the colour wherein each colour code specifies a certain category.

Prohibition signages – these are signages that prohibit you from doing something for your own safety and that of the general public. Typical prohibition signs include ‘No General Public Beyond This Point’, ‘Stop’, ‘Customers Not Permitted In Working Area’, ‘Authorized Personnel Only’ and so on. Such signages are made up of a red circular border with a white background and text in black.

Mandatory signs – these signs are installed to urge the public to perform certain actions that contribute to the overall safety of the workplace. Typical mandatory signages are blue in colour with white symbols and black text with no border. Such signages include ‘Eye Protection Must Be Worn’, ‘Safety Gloves Must Be Worn’, ‘Always Wear Face Protection’ and so on.

Hazard Signages – these signs act as a warning for risks and dangers around the workplace. They comprise a yellow triangle with a black border and black texts and symbols. Typical signs are ‘Controlled Area Restricted Entry’, ‘When Alarm Bell Sounds, Tank Is Filled To Capacity, Do Not Overfill’ ‘Due To Regulations Please Stay Behind The Yellow Line’ and so on.


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