Electrical Contracting News (ECN) August 2016 - Page 28

EMERGENCY LIGHTING It is essential to communicate safety information in a common language. SIGN OF THE TIMES Signs are an important part of health and safety in and around the work place. Introduced in 2013, the British Standard relating to safe signage – BS EN ISO7010 – is still relatively new and as such there is still some confusion surrounding it. Paul Dawson of ESP seeks to clarify some of the questions it raises. B S EN ISO7010 is an international standard for consistent safety sign regulation across Europe. It aims to bring consistency in safety signage. Sign language With increasing trade and travel across international borders, it is essential to communicate safety information in a common language. So BS EN ISO7010 specifies safety signs that use standardised symbols instead of words. The standard also reduces the potential for confusion and accidents by ensuring that there is only one sign for each meaning. The date for adoption was January 2013, when it became a European Normative and replaced the previous British Standard BS5499-5. The standard applies to all locations where safety issues must be addressed, including workplaces and other buildings, ships and public areas; as well as signs that appear in manuals, notices, product labelling, and escape and evacuation plans. Anyone with responsibility for public or workforce safety will need this standard – in particular building owners, facility managers, safety managers and sign makers, and people who select, install or inspect safety signs. Whenever a new British Standard is published for any kind of product, there seems to be a rush of literature on the back of it claiming that you have to replace this or that in order to comply. BS EN ISO7010, relating to graphical symbols, safety colours and signs, and registered safety signs, is no exception. Is it the law? No, British Standards are not law. They are Codes of Practice, generally affecting only new products, as opposed to those previously produced. 28 28-29 Emergency Lighting – ESP.indd 28 18/07/2016 10:35