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3 common mistakes with safety signs & how to avoid

Braden Lewis

Safety signs are an essential part of any workplace safety programme. They offer an effective way to highlight occupational hazards and safe practices, whilst representing a key element of any responsible business’s health and safety strategy.

However, some common mistakes can make safety signs less effective, cause workers to either miss a sign completely, or misinterpret them. At best, this can lead to confusion, but at worst causes a danger with greater risk of employees suffering an accident.

In this article, we highlight three common mistakes with safety signs and how you can avoid them for a safer workplace.

1. Putting safety signs in the wrong place

One of the easiest and most frequent mistakes made when it comes to safety signs comes with placement. Understanding the best place to put your signage is essential and can make a world of difference to its effectiveness.

In some cases, signs designed to communicate vital safety information end up too high to see without specifically looking for it. At other times, the sign will be fixed in a location that is easily blocked by other surrounding items, obscuring the employee’s view.

Another placement related issue involves the use of signs in poorly lit areas. Without an illuminated sign, you’re unlikely to deliver any real benefit in darker locations.

The solution to this problem? It’s fairly straightforward. When placing a sign, think about where it’s easily visible to the workers that need to see it. Don’t place it too high, nor too low, and make sure it’s securely fixed so that it won’t get knocked down.

Safety barrier sign

2. Unclear or vague safety sign messaging

Although safety signs are primarily used as visual tools, many will require text to make the message clear. However, use too much text and you’ll create visual confusion, whilst too little text can leave the message unclear – here’s why.

Too much information can be overwhelming, and even dull the impact of the visual notice – especially for anyone not fluent in the language used on the sign. On the other hand, not enough description can make things unclear. For example, if a notice reads “overhead hazard” without specifying what it actually is, the worker will not know what to look out for, making it hard to take effective precautions.

An effective safety sign should be clear and concise, highlighting the nature of the hazard and the action that needs to be taken to avoid it, alongside an appropriate visual image. Apply this to your safety signs successfully and achieve significant health and safety benefits across the workplace.

Looking for safety signage?

View our signage range Safety signage

3. Failing to use Tough safety signs

Arguably the biggest mistake to be made with safety signs comes down to the product/material used to portray vital messages. Cheap, easily marked, and signs that fade are a recipe for disaster.

Your signs go through a lot more than you realise, especially when working in harsh environments. From the sun’s rays causing signs to fade, through to freezing temperatures that cause cracks. Not to mention any day-to-day operations that could cause scratching or permanently mark your safety signs.

In order to avoid the short-lived safety signs that many organisations face, it’s worth looking into a solution that can stand the test of time.

STAUNCH® is the solution designed to meet every challenge your signs face, in the harshest of environments. It’s UV and freeze resistant, ultra-flexible for curved or flat mounting, and can withstand anything that’s thrown at it (literally). Using a subsurface print, the STAUNCH® sign provides a crystal-clear message, forever, with no need for replacements. Protect your critical message from scuffs and bashes with safety signage that isn’t ignored.


For more information, visit the STAUNCH® Signage page, or get in touch with our expert team today.


At REGALTAGS®, our Tough Signage doesn’t end there. Choose the ideal solution for your business from our selection of Tough, Tougher, and Toughest signs. We also provide specialist options such as Photoluminescent and Barrier signs for all your signage needs. All of our safety sign products can be completely customised to your needs, from messaging, colours, and sizing, we’ve got you covered.

If you’d like to find out more on how we can help with your safety signs, contact our friendly team at REGALTAGS® today. We’re more than happy to answer any questions you have and can guide you through each material option.


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