Symbols – and How Your Signs Communicate Safety

By Clarion Safety Systems | 4th Apr 2016

Symbols are an integral component of your safety signage. They’re used to graphically convey the hazard’s nature, consequence, and/or avoidance information. They bring a higher level of noticeability. And, they can communicate the message at hand quickly and across language barriers. All to create effective warnings that can better protect your workforce.

We recently made a design change to the symbols in some of our safety sign products. We removed the yellow outer border – the area of the symbol that extends beyond its black border – from all ISO-formatted warning symbols in the symbol panel.

ISO gives you the option to choose to use or not use the outer yellow border. Here at Clarion, we recommend removing the border.

Why is that our stance – and why is this seemingly small detail important to you, and to your signage?

With this change, the size of the warning symbol increases. Making the symbol as large as possible is a good thing to do because signs are typically viewed at long viewing distances, especially when compared to the viewing distances typically found for safety labels. Increasing the size of the symbol allows the sign and its message to be seen from as long a viewing distance as possible.

 ISO Label Update

On that note, our labels will not be changed. Labels are viewed at shorter distances and viewers can usually orient themselves to legibly “read” the label’s message, including its symbol. Also, it’s important to maintain consistency with ISO “symbol-only” label formats; these labels need a border to make sure they visually stand out from the surface on which they are mounted.

Stay tuned here on the Clarion blog to find out more about evolving safety industry best practices, and how our products can help you to better reduce your company’s liability risk and protect your people.