We live in a world that is pacing at high speed. With the number of advancements in technology, accidents are also increasing. One of the most cardinal ones in this list of bad accidents is fire outbreaks. Fire outbreaks are a broad category. Any damage caused by fire ignition is considered a fire hazard. It could happen at your own home, workplace, or somewhere nearby that would affect you badly. Because of this, we should always be prepared for fire hazards. We should have the means to prevent the outbreak from happening, or if it happens, we must have a foolproof fire safety system to remove the threat from the beginning itself. For this, as responsible citizens, we can do a lot more. We can install quality fire safety systems in our buildings and offices. And we can also install fire signs at places where accidents are prone to happen in our facilities. Even though many people ignore the fire signs around them on a typical day, it plays a vital role when a fire outbreak happens, and that is precisely what makes it crucial.
Why is fire signage considered a vital need in fire safety? That is a common question that arises. It is indispensable for the people involved in the building to find an escape route and fire exits when a fire hazard occurs. And with these signs, they are guided towards the safest path to get out and keep them away from getting into more danger. Also, fire signage is a must-have in any facility as the law demands. According to the RRO (Regulatory Reform Order), fire signage must be installed on all business premises to give the occupants of the building a safe exit in the event of a fire outbreak.
If you want to learn how fire signage works and its different categories, you have come to the right place. Here, we will discuss the different types of fire signage and how they are helpful in a fire accident and how they appear. So let’s get into it, shall we?
If a technical door works along the lines of the push to open or sliding mechanisms in the exit section, then it should have proper instructions on how to operate the doors. This is extremely important because when an outbreak happens, people will panic. And since their only focus would be to get out of the building, operating a door might seem like a task in this scenario. If it lacks instructions, it might take a significant amount of time for them to escape during a fire accident. Each moment is precious, and there is no time to waste. If the instructions to open the fire exit or escape routes are written on the door itself, they can easily follow those to get out and eliminate any dangers. In addition, these fire exit signs will be mostly illuminated, enabling people to see them even in the dark.
The instructions should be given in a green sign, as this poses no threats, only escape. Green symbols indicate a safe escape and not a fire threat. This will put the occupants at ease, and they will be able to have a better mental space.
When a fire hazard occurs, putting down the fire will be the first instinct. If the fire is fierce, this is not the first step you should take. You need to be safe and sound outside the building to get the necessary help and avoid getting in harm’s way. This is where escape path signs come to your rescue. These signs will give you proper direction as to where you should approach to get a safe clearance and get out of the affected area. They show you where the exit doors are and make the evacuation time as short as possible. The best perk of the escape paths is that they decrease the likelihood of people getting trapped or injured in a fire hazard. Escape path signs will be green in colour because, as per the basic rule of the fire signage system, signs that indicate escape routes and exits and possess no danger should be indicated in the colour green.
As the protocol suggests, these signs are in blue to indicate their purpose. To determine its said purpose, it is also given in circular shapes to be noticeable. These signs, unlike other fire safety signage, are for preventing fires rather than escaping or dealing with a fire hazard. A standard fire safety signage that comes under mandatory is “Fire Door Keep Shut,” “Fire Exit Keep Clear,” etc. These signs display the steps people must take to conform to fire regulations, ensuring that people know that a forbidden activity should not be done on the premise to avoid a disaster. Most people are hesitant about the mandatory signs. Still, it is highly and strictly recommended to follow the compulsory sign commands not only for your safety but also to keep the safety of the people around you intact. There can be legal action against you if you do not obey fire safety signage. Therefore, it is better to be well prepared and prevent a fire than to commit a legal obstruction and get stuck in a fire hazard.
You might have come across instructions on what to do when there is a fire and how to safeguard yourself. These are called “fire action signs.” These are important in fire safety signage. Most people might not know how to deal with a fire outbreak. They might also not be familiar with the fire safety signage symbols either. These fire action signs should be on all the main entrances and doors, enabling the folks to be well aware of how they should handle a fire hazard. It is highly crucial that people are well aware of all the activities they can do in the event of a fire accident, and they can also help others get a grip on the situation if they are not well-versed in what to do. Since they are prevention signs, they are seen in blue and white and in a font that every human being can grasp. Some fire action posters can include fire safety signs, which are helpful for people in familiarizing themselves with the signs, so they don’t get confused when a fire occurs.
As the name suggests, this is considered great help as fire safety signage. And this is a prevalent sign that any person can recognize and acknowledge. The prohibition sign consists of a white circular board with a red outline and a diagonal red line in the middle, indicating that said activity is prohibited on the premises. The most common example of this is the “No Smoking” signs. It is a black illustration of a cigarette with a red line crossing it. This means cigarettes are not allowed to be smoked there. Even a tiny spark can cause catastrophic burns and hazards in a commercial setup.
Additionally, there are prohibition signs indicating no mobile phones at gas stations. This is to avoid any ignition at the gas station caused by radiation on your devices. Since the gas station is filled with flammable fuels, the chaos a single mobile phone usage can cause is unimaginable. These are just two of the prohibition signs. There are a lot more that you should be familiar with to be educated entirely on it. In workspaces and commercial facilities, fire safety drills and training will be given for people to help themselves in unfortunate situations.
Safe condition signs play a reviving role in fire safety signage. They point towards the nearest fire escape or viable escape routes and towards first aid boxes if you are injured and need medical help. As we all know by now, the signs that display no danger will be indicated in green. Safety conditions signs are also in the green colour. The fire assembly point symbol is a very common and familiar safety sign. This consists of a board where many people are surrounded by arrow symbols, indicating that it is a specific spot where folks should be assembled on account of a fire outbreak. There are other safe condition signs, like the refuge point symbol. This is exclusively for disabled people who are not capable of reaching the fire assembly point because of their physical conditions. At times like this, the best way to get help will be to contact sources outside the building for the evacuation process. For that, an emergency telephone symbol will lead you to the phone services so that you can use it in case of a fire emergency. Last but not least, most minor signs on emergency exits, “Push Bar To Open” or “Slide The Door To Open”, can also be identified as safe conditions signs in the fire safety signage as green and white.
It is better to avoid something that you know will cause issues than to find a solution after it happens. Warning signs are universally accepted and well-used fire safety signage to inform people that a hazard is present. It would help if you were extra cautious around the warning signs to avoid a disaster. Warning symbols are triangular in shape. There will be black markings or illustrations on them for better visibility. A standard fire warning sign you will come across is the flammable warning. This sign consists of a flame in black colour and indicates the presence of hazardous and explosive fuel, and there should not be any ignition around the said radius, which can cause a fire outbreak. Then there is the safety threat symbol for the explosion, which is a bomb on a yellow triangular board. This indicates the presence of explosives, and you should steer clear of the area, and under no circumstance, any fire ignition around its radius should happen.
If a fire hazard occurs in the facility, we cannot measure its capacity. But if you think fire extinguishing techniques can control it, then it is a choice. Make sure you have enough experience using fire-prevention equipment before you begin to attempt this. Fire equipment signs are for people who have gone through proper training on putting down fires. This fire safety signage is rectangular and has red in colour and white illustrations. A fire extinguisher sign indicates an extinguisher nearby that you can use, and there will be instructions on how to use it near the equipment itself. Make sure you read that correctly before using it.
The most vital fire equipment sign is the fire alarm sign, which consists of a hand on a rectangle surrounded by flames to indicate pressing the fire alarm nearby to notify people that there is a fire outbreak in the building. A fire hose reel symbol consists of a hose around a circle, indicating a water hose nearby. These are strictly for people who have used a hose reel before because its usage can be tricky.
Make sure you are well aware and educated about fire safety signage, as it plays an essential role in case of a fire hazard. It is better to be educated and keep yourself and the people around you safe than be unaware of it and be prone to dangers.