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6 Ways to Enhance Workplace Safety Signage for Manufacturers With Large-Format Printing

Safety signs are a critical element of a company’s safety culture and regulatory compliance. The Occupational Safety & Health Administration reports that improper hazard communications standards or lack of safety signage are the second most-cited workplace violations and the third most prevalent reason for workplace injuries.

Companies that implement effective, clear, visual communication can reduce accidents and injuries while increasing efficiency and promoting safe behavior in their facilities.

Clear, visible, and eye-catching workplace safety signage is vital in accident prevention. Advances in large-format printing have made creating this type of signage easier than ever. As a leader in large-format digital printing, Heeter has become the printer of choice for manufacturers who understand the benefits of large-format printing as a solution for their safety signage needs. Our certified print services meet your needs for privacy, security and sustainability.

We’ll explore the six ways manufacturing safety signage can benefit from large-format printing and critical areas where workplace safety signage is a must-have for safety and compliance.

Six ways manufacturing safety signage can benefit from large-format printing

1. Visibility

Large-format signs improve readability so that safety messages are easily seen. Workers can read the sign at a safe distance, allowing them to understand and avoid the hazard. OSHA regulations require that the sign’s signal word, e.g., “Danger” or “Caution,” be readable from at least five feet away.

2. Customization

While regulations require signage for specific hazards, digitally printed safety signs can be customized to the unique safety requirements of each facility. Custom signs could display facility or equipment procedures, maintenance information, and general signs with safety-related messages, such as housekeeping and sanitation. 

You can add company logos or location information to each sign as needed. For example, you can make sure employee or handicapped parking is reserved in a shared parking lot.

3. Detailed graphics

Large-format printing can accommodate detailed graphics, diagrams and instructional content for extra clarity in addition to the required safety signage. Keep in mind there are specific tools and expertise required to design large-format graphics compared to standard dimensions.

4. Durability

Large-format printing can accommodate printing on durable materials like vinyl, metal or laminated substrates, which ensure longevity, even in harsh manufacturing environments.

5. Compliance

Safety signage that meets regulatory requirements ensures compliance and standardization, reducing confusion among employees and increasing safety. In the event of a reportable incident, compliance will come under scrutiny as part of the OHSA investigation.

Keep in mind that regulations specify all aspects of design for required signage, including:

  • Standard sign and label colors
  • Signal words (“Danger,” “Warning” and “Caution”)
  • Letter style and size
  • Sign and label placement

6. Multilingual support

Customized large-format signage has the space to incorporate multilingual messages to ensure clarity for non-English speakers. You can post multilingual no smoking, no cell phones and no-entry signage to ensure everyone at the facility understands the instructions that help create a safe working environment.

Where Safety Signage Should Be Displayed

Regulations call for placing safety signs as close as possible to the hazard, location or equipment to clearly identify the area. The signs should be visible from a safe distance, well-illuminated and protected against damage like fading.

To ensure your safety and informational signs are as effective as possible, consider these safety guidelines:

1. High-traffic areas

With the proliferation of mobile devices and other distractions in the workplace, signs in high-traffic areas can remind workers to pay attention to the environment around them. Cluster general informational and training signage in locations with high employee foot traffic. Required safety signs must be placed close to the hazard, regardless of the foot traffic.

One of the most critical signs for workers is to track the days since a reportable accident. This reminds workers of their responsibilities to work safely and look out for their co-workers.

2. Near equipment

It’s essential to consider the traffic patterns approaching the hazard area to ensure workers are aware of the situation at a safe distance. In addition to the required “Danger” signs, additional informational signage near equipment can inform workers about precautions they can take, such as not wearing loose clothing near a machine with rotating parts or wearing hearing protection in noisy areas.

3. Warning zones

Label hazardous zones prone to danger, such as heavily trafficked areas and areas near generators, to guide employees in safely navigating the situation. For example, specific signage is recommended but not required for hazardous areas that require fall protection measures. 

The signage can indicate the need for personal protective equipment before entering the area.

Custom warning signs can point out electrical hazards, open trenches and other temporary situations that employees may not know about.

4. Training reminders

Use informational and training signage to remind workers about proper procedures, such as the correct way to lift heavy loads. Large-format display graphics grab workers’ attention, similar to outdoor advertising signage.

5. Emergency signage

Clearly label safety aids such as fire extinguishers, first aid kits, eye wash stations and evacuation routes. Large-format printing solutions can help these signs stand out from the background.

6. Wayfinding

Add directional signs and graphics inside and outside of your facilities to coordinate shipments and direct traffic. Employers are required to provide safety data sheets for all works. Use floor and wall signs and walkways outlined in tape to direct workers to the location of the critical information.

7. Labeling

Attach eye-catching signs and labels to aisles, shelving and other areas that help maintain efficiency. Making it easier for workers to find their way and the things they need reduces wasted time and energy.

If you’re looking for innovation and excellence for your safety signage program, consider large-format printing as the solution for your needs. Heeter has worked with many manufacturers to use the unique capabilities of large-format printing to improve the effectiveness of their safety programs and comply with federal and state regulations.

With deep experience printing posters, brochures, pamphlets and many other communication tools, Heeter can be your one-stop shop for workplace safety signage. Heeter can serve as your fulfillment center with an online store to ship safety communication wherever it’s needed.

Please reach out with any questions or to discuss your workplace safety signage needs. Schedule a 15-minute discovery call with our large-format print experts.