For Sale: Revised ANSI Standard on Facility Safety Signage

The National Electrical Manufacturers Association has published ANSI Z535.2-2007 American National Standard for Environmental and Facility Safety Signs. This publication contains the requirements for safety signs to be used to alert and inform viewers of the existence of potential hazards to personnel or property in the environment or in facilities, the nature and potential severity of the hazard, and the steps to be taken to avoid the hazard.

Allen Clapp, chairman of Subcommittee Z535.2 on Environmental and Facility Safety Signs, says the document also includes requirements for signs describing safety procedures, the location of safety equipment, and directional arrows used to alert viewers of safe locations or safety equipment. The requirements cover both fixed signs and larger, movable signs that are sometimes used on large industrial sites with changing conditions.

"This edition helps users differentiate hazards that are likely to result in personal injury from hazards likely to result only in damage to facilities," Clapp said. "The safety sign formats in this standard are consistent with those of ANSI Z535.4 for product safety signs and labels, and ANSI Z535.5 for temporary safety tags and barricade tapes. This standard, however, appropriately reflects the different requirements for environmental and facility safety signs to alert viewers at greater distances, so that they may avoid entering--or take appropriate cautions before entering--the location containing the hazard."

This standard incorporates a new annex to help users estimate and evaluate risks from potential hazards in the environment or in facilities, and select the appropriate alerting signal word and sign format consistent with the type and degree of hazard. Updated references also help users design effective, efficient safety signs, Clapp said. The table of contents and scope of ANSI Z535.2-2007 may be viewed, or a hardcopy or electronic copy purchased for $78 by visiting NEMA's Web site at http://www.nema.org/stds/z535-2.cfm.

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