Should You Post Safety Signs, or Warning and Instructional Plates?

BY Rowena Taylor

Warning and Instructional Plates

One of the things you should never neglect when it comes to your business is safety. Having a safety program, and using equipment, as well as materials meant to remind people of the importance of following rules and regulations for their wellbeing, is essential to any workplace, no matter what kind of industry you belong to. With that said, finding the right materials and equipment for safety is your next target.

When it comes to the reminders that people see in these workplaces regarding safety, you have safety signs as well as warning and instructional plates. While these two may carry similar messages, and may sometimes be mistaken for each other, these are actually two different mediums that help remind people of what to do in order to keep themselves out of harm’s way. One is often smaller and uses thick metal plates, while the other can be made using various materials like plastic and wood, and are oftentimes bigger.

So, which type of safety reminder should you use in specific areas of your facility? There is a way to determine this, and this involves analyzing what each area needs and what type of message you think is required there. You will need to find out whether the area is exposed to heat, chemicals, electrical currents and the like in order to make an educated decision as well.

More often than not, safety signs are chosen for those areas where such elements are not present. Since most of these signs are made using materials like plastic, which can deteriorate in heat and when exposed to certain chemicals, these are generally ideal in areas where these are not present. In situation where such factors are present, it might be a good idea to choose warning and instructional plates for your safety reminders and warnings since these can withstand the damaging effects of heat, chemicals and electrical currents.

Some people have this mistaken notion that these metal plates can only be made in small sizes. This is probably because these are often used in smaller sizes that can be easily mounted onto equipment and machinery for safety reminders, warnings and instructions of use. Let it be known however that these metal nameplates can actually be made in bigger sizes, sometimes as big as regular signage, so these can actually be used in lieu of signs where the need for more durable, heat-resistant, and chemical-resistant safety warnings is required.

The question regarding the use of either of these two in a safety program arises usually when there are budgetary constraints. Since metals are generally more expensive than plastic, the latter is often considered for use in areas where heat and other similar elements are not factors to be considered. The former is then relegated to be used in areas that require hardy signage, since metals can survive the ravages of heat, electrical currents and harsh chemicals.

So, when you are confronted with this particular dilemma and you are not sure which type of safety sign or warning medium to use, if your budget allows for the use of metal all around, it might be a good idea to invest in warning and instructional plates made out of either aluminum or stainless steel. If you have a rather tight budget however, then you will need to determine which areas need the use of metals and which ones will be fine with using plastic signs for your safety reminders and warnings.

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