Contrary to popular belief, safety signage is a distinct form of safety equipment rather than the annoying and seemingly insignificant placards that have permeated the cultural zeitgeist. Without these signs, workplace injuries and detrimental incidents would surely skyrocket. So, the next time you see “Employees Must Wash Hands” or “Watch Your Step,” it’s important to understand the significance of these signs and the roles they play in our everyday lives. This brief article will detail the new age of safety signage and how it has expanded over the past several decades.
The Humble Beginnings
More than 100 years ago, in 1914, the first-ever pamphlet on safety signage was published for a particular worker’s compensation bureau. It essentially detailed the importance of “DANGER” signage in hazardous areas yet it failed to establish standard formats, guidelines, colours, fonts, and sizes. As a result, each business, factory, and industrial centre featured its own personalised outlay of signage, most of which was very difficult to understand.
Fast-forward to 1941 and the safety signage landscape began to adopt a certain level of unity across the board. Factories around the world began implementing common practices for “CAUTION” and “NOTICE” signs, among others. This standardisation process has provided a distinct format for many different safety signs, ensuring that everyone can understand the subject matter regardless of age, literacy, or language barriers. Graphics, logos, and intuitive slogans took the signage industry by storm, allowing even the most uninformed individuals to recognise threats and risks.
The Future of Safety Signage and Preventative Protocols
As globalisation and worldwide commerce has been booming with no end to the growth in sight, it’s important to keep up with the times, especially as a prudent business owner. The most important aspect of this mindframe is to mitigate liability wherever possible. In this regard, practicing effective safety protocols, such as implementing modern safety signage and adhering to the take 5 safety booklet, is an invaluable way to insulate your business and its employees from unnecessary danger and harm. Enacting a safety-oriented culture shift around the workplace is easy to do with the right help, especially if you haven’t tended to your workplace safety protocols in a while. After all, the beneficial developments in the safety signage arena have made enhancing employee welfare easier than ever before.
Creating a Safer Workplace
With the advent of modern technology and the advances in printing equipment, you can now purchase your own personal signage printing machine. However, this isn’t recommended as these machines require a dedicated workforce, a particular level of expertise, and constant maintenance. Instead of investing in this type of equipment, it’s far wiser to invest in a relationship with a reputable safety printing company. As well as being able to fabricate modern signs for your business, these companies can also facilitate accident and injury reports, work permits, accreditation certificates, job hazard analysis forms, and even dedicated company checklists. Creating a relationship with these safety experts will allow you to not only protect your workers and limit on-site incidents but also obtain that all-too-important peace of mind that every business owner strives for.