Manufacturing facilities are unique workplaces. In a world when so few of us create something physical, these facilities continue to churn out the materials and products that the rest of us couldn’t function without. And unlike the typical office building, retail store or service provider, the very nature of manufacturing – large machines quickly performing work humans aren’t equipped to do – can be dangerous and even deadly when mistakes are made, or mishaps occur.
It’s for this reason that signage in manufacturing settings is of the utmost importance. Workers need to understand the dangers they face and safety measures they should take in a variety of environments, some relatively benign but others with significant risks. Whether it’s “Ear Protection Required in This Area” or “Slippery When Wet,” effective and clear signage ensures that everyone working and moving through your manufacturing facility will do so safely.
But what makes the use of signs in manufacturing facilities so important? For one thing, they’re noisy. The constant rumble of heavy machinery makes it difficult to effectively communicate by voice or PA system. And if your signs are doing their jobs, your employees’ hearing is further reduced by the fact that they’re wearing their ear protection to guard against long-term hearing damage.
Second, there are typically lots of moving parts in a manufacturing environment, both on machines and involving vehicles like hand trucks and forklifts. If your employees are receiving regular and clear reminders to be aware of dangers, complacency can result in severe injury or death. For those who don’t work on the factory floor – administrative office personnel, for instance – clear signage helps them navigate unfamiliar environments and avoid situations that could put them in danger.
Third, appropriate signage is integral to managing the risks associated with a manufacturing facility. Accidents occur, but one that was preventable had the correct sign been posted in a dangerous area can result in significant legal action and result in serious losses and/or penalties related to a court settlement or punitive action.
Finally, it’s just the right thing to do, both to make sure you have a safe workplace and to fulfil the requirements of federal law. The Occupational Health and Safety Administration has specific requirements for the types of signs that must be used in manufacturing environments and where they should be posted. Not following these rules puts your company at risk of violating federal health and safety laws.
Does your site need to update or add to its safety signage? If so, give Growth Inc. a call to chat with one of our sign specialists.