Safety Sign and Label Quick Tip: Why Materials Matter

When it comes to effectively communicating safety through signs and labels, you’re likely already well-aware that properly crafting the content is important.

But, here’s a fact that you may not have considered quite as closely: durability, and the material choices you make, are just as important as content.

Why? Safety signs and safety labels need to be seen – and seen clearly – in order to be understood. Potential injuries and deaths, and your company’s liability exposure, depend on the longevity of the materials used in the manufacture of your signage.

Take a look at Clarion’s quick, 3-minute video, “Durability of Safety Signs, Labels and Markings,” where we explain what ANSI Z535 says about warning labels and expected life of products, as well as why durability is essential to every workplace safety sign and product safety label.

For more up-to-date information, resources and tips on a wide range of topics related to safety signs and labels, visit the Clarion video library or Learning Center.

And, keep in mind, our product lines of workplace safety signs, water safety signs and product safety labels offer the finest 3M adhesives, base materials and overlaminates, for products that withstand environmental and surface conditions where others fail. We have a full range of material options to choose from; if you have a material durability issue or question, we can work with you to find a specialized solution. Contact us today to learn more!

Posted in ANSI, Clarion Safety Systems News, Industry News, Safety Labels, Safety Signs, Standards Expertise | Tagged , , , , , | Comments Off

Product Safety Labels: New Clarion Article!

Looking for more information on how labels can be used to effectively convey safety messages for your products or electrical equipment?

Then you won’t want to miss NEMA’s latest eiXtra e-newsletter. This month, our partners in safety at NEMA, the trade association for the electrical manufacturing industry, have featured an article from Clarion called, “Your Guide to Effective Product Safety Labels.”

The article is a featured guest column from our CEO, Geoffrey Peckham, who also serves as chair of the ANSI Z535 Committee for Safety Signs and Colors and the U.S. Technical Advisory Group to ISO Technical Committee 145 – Graphical Symbols.

You’ll learn about the goal of safety labels, defining types of labels to fit specific needs and best practices for label designs that are in compliance with the latest national and international standards.

Be sure to head over to NEMA’s website to take a look at our article, as well as the rest of the newsletter, which is packed with manufacturer, regulatory and standardization news for electroindustry professionals.

Posted in Clarion Industry Partners, Clarion Safety Systems News, Geoffrey Peckham, Industry News, Safety Labels, Standards Expertise | Tagged , , , , , | Comments Off

OSHA’s Incorporation of the ANSI Z535 Standards: What’s It Mean for Manufacturers?

Why is OSHA’s change to incorporate the ANSI Z535-2011 standards in their regulations important to product manufacturers using ANSI Z535.4 warnings on their products?

NEMA, the trade association for the electrical manufacturing industry, asked this question of our CEO, Geoffrey Peckham, in the latest issue of its ei Magazine.

With Clarion and Geoffrey’s work in the standards arena – including his role as chair of the ANSI Z535 Committee for Safety Signs and Colors – this topic, part of the magazine’s theme this month of ‘standards collaboration’, is just the right fit for us!

Now, to answer the question: there are two main reasons why this development in OSHA’s regulations is important to product design engineers.

First, the OSHA change represents the U.S. government’s validation of the ANSI Z535 design principles as the state of the art for warnings. This gives companies using ANSI Z535.4 labels an even better defense position should an accident occur and warnings are at issue.

Second, as employers install ANSI Z535-style signs and tags in their facilities and public areas, the U.S. will increasingly have a single, national uniform system of hazard recognition. The outcome of this consistency should be more effective communication.


Read the “Ask the Expert” Q and A in the October 2014 issue of NEMA’s ei Magazine to learn more.

Posted in ANSI, Clarion Industry Partners, Geoffrey Peckham, OSHA, Safety Labels, Safety Signs | Tagged , , , , | Comments Off

Technical Lecture on Product Safety Labeling

Attention East Coasters! For product design engineers and professionals interested in learning more about best practices and latest advancements in safety labeling, here’s some exciting news you won’t want to miss –

On October 9, our CEO Geoffrey Peckham will be presenting a technical lecture on product safety labeling through the Long Island Chapter of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers’ (IEEE) Product Safety Engineering Society.

The lecture, “The New Era of Product Safety Labeling,” will be held at 6:00 p.m. on October 9, 2014 at Underwriters Laboratories in Melville, Long Island.

Topics discussed will include:

  • The ANSI Z535 Standards for Product Safety Signs and Labels
  • International Standards
  • U.S./International Standards Harmonization
  • Durability Considerations
  • To learn more about the lecture, including registration information, read our news release or visit the IEEE website.

Posted in ANSI, Clarion Safety Systems News, Geoffrey Peckham, ISO, Industry News, Safety Labels, Standards Expertise | Tagged , , , , , | Comments Off

Product Safety Labels: Understanding Risk Severity Levels

If you’re making a product that has one or more risks associated with it at any point in its lifecycle, you need to either eliminate those risks, guard them or communicate them so people can avoid them. Are you effectively communicating degrees of risk on your product safety labels? This can be a complex task. But Clarion – and the latest standards – are here to help!

When it comes to hazard alerting labels (labels that communicate potential personal injury hazards and how to avoid them) the color-coded signal words “DANGER,” “WARNING” and “CAUTION” are used identically by the ANSI Z535.4 and ISO 3864-2 product safety label standards to indicate varying degrees or levels of risk severity.

In order to choose the right signal word, your first step – your foundation – is to perform a risk assessment. At its most basic level, risk assessment involves considering the probability and severity of outcomes that can result from a hazardous situation, and then considering various strategies to either eliminate or reduce the risk.


Once the risk presented by your product’s potentially hazardous situation has been determined and you have chosen to use a safety label as a means to lessen the risk, then the task becomes one of choosing the right signal word to convey the severity of risk involved. Annex E in the ANSI Z535.4 Standard for Product Safety Signs and Labels lays out the decision tree (shown here) for choosing the right signal word based on your risk assessment’s decisions concerning a particular hazard’s likelihood and degree of potential injury.

Keep in mind: content levels (the amount of information conveyed on the label, including the decision to use signal words) vary depending on many factors. There’s no single right way to do things. Factors to consider include the characteristics of your intended audience and the markets where your products are sold, as well as the specific details related to the complexity of your industry, the complexity of your product and the hazards associated with its entire lifecycle. Combine all of these factors and you have the ingredients needed to design effective product safety labels. The use of signal words to communicate risk is one safety label component that can be used to accomplish the job of better protecting people from harm.

Interested in learning more about risk severity levels and safety communications? Read the “On Your Mark” article featured in the latest issue of In Compliance Magazine, which provides an in-depth discussion from Clarion CEO, Geoffrey Peckham, on risk severity levels and effective product safety labels.

“On Your Mark” is a regular column that explores labeling and graphical symbols, and how they’re used to convey safety messages. Stay tuned here on the Clarion Safety Systems’ blog for the next article in this series – and for more insight on best practice safety signs, labels and markings.

Posted in ANSI, Clarion Safety Systems News, Geoffrey Peckham, Industry News, Safety Labels, Standards Expertise | Tagged , , , , | Comments Off