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When Safety Signs and Signals are necessary?

Employers must provide safety signs and signals where, despite putting in place all other relevant measures, there is a significant risk to the health and safety of employees and that cannot be avoided or controlled in any other way.

Signs must be clear, legible and easily understandable, and should be used to identify actions that are prohibited, safeguards that must be followed, warning of a hazard  and to direct towards fire exits/equipment or first-aid equipment.

However, safety signs and signals are unnecessary if they do not help reduce the risk or if the risk is not significant and you should avoid using too many signs which may cause confusion.

According to the Health and Safety (Safety Signs and Signals Regulations) 1996, employers must, where necessary:

  • use road traffic signs in workplaces to regulate road traffic
  • maintain the safety signs they provide
  • explain unfamiliar signs to their employees and tell them what they need to do when they see safety signs

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