Print Share

ISO standard for safety signs updated

Tuesday, 6 August, 2019 - 10:45
Policy & legislation
National News

The ISO standard that is a reference for safety signs has just been updated to incorporate new safety signs that are in use around the world.

Safety signs are essential for preventing accidents and injury, and symbols that are internationally agreed and globally used in safety signs ensure clarity and consistency, regardless of language, culture or setting, said Jan-Bernd Stell, Chair of the ISO technical committee that developed the standard.

From no-go areas on construction sites to emergency exits, ISO 7010, Graphical symbols — Safety colours and safety signs — Registered safety signs, prescribes safety signs for the purposes of accident prevention, fire protection, health hazard information and emergency evacuation.

It features the shape and colour of the sign as referenced in ISO 3864-1, Graphical symbols — Safety colours and safety signs — Part 1: Design principles for safety signs and safety markings, and the design of the symbol is according to ISO 3864-3, Graphical symbols — Safety colours and safety signs — Part 3: Design principles for graphical symbols for use in safety signs.

Stell said lack of harmonisation and standardisation in this area could lead to confusion and accidents.

“International standardisation of safety signs means everyone speaks the same language when it comes to safety,” he said.

“This provides a simple solution for everyone, both in workplaces and public areas like airports where many nationalities converge.

“Examples of safety signs documented in the standard include everything from warnings around deep water, electricity or barbed wire to instructions such as ‘do not walk or stand here’, or to not use lifts in the event of a fire.”