Part 1 - Danger Signs

May 04, 2014 3 min read 0 Comments


Over the years we have had many inquiries regarding the correct use of Danger Signs in the workplace.

The standard is definitive when it comes to the design and use of Danger Signs. This category of sign is ONLY to be used IF there is a likelihood of fatality should the message be ignored. Danger Signs are a member of the Hazard Signs classification.

Section 3 (3.1c) Design of Signs

Danger Signs shall have word legends only (no symbols) and shall conform with the requirements of Clause 2.3.4.

2.3.4 DANGER signs

Signs in this category are of a special design which incorporates the word DANGER in white letters on a red symbolic oval shape. The signs shall comprise a white rectangle with black enclosure and white surround with the DANGER symbol on a black background placed above or to the left of the white rectangle, generally as shown in the examples in Figure 2.6, and as specified in Appendix C. The legend within the white rectangle shall comprise a worded warning message in black letters. Symbols are not used on DANGER signs.

NOTE: The messages on DANGER signs are confined to the warning of a hazard or hazardous condition which is likely to be life-threatening (see Clause 2.1(b)).

If a symbolic sign is required in conjunction with a DANGER sign, it shall be a separate sign placed beside or below the DANGER sign.


Recommended minimum size are as follows:
(a) Signs in a factory or yard environment, where lighting is good and signs are
mounted in reasonably prominent positions:
Symbolic sign size: 15 mm per metre of viewing distance.
Letter size:
Upper case: 5 mm per metre of viewing distance.
Lower case: 4 mm per metre of viewing distance.
NOTE: The above letter and sign sizes are approximately twice those required for legibility
alone. This recommendation is based on the need to provide more prominent legends where
signs will not always be within the observer’s field of view.

(b) Signs in poor lighting conditions, not likely to fall readily into the observer’s line of
sight, or are otherwise likely to be placed in less conspicuous positions—increase
legend sizes in Item (a) by 50 percent.

Did you know that the Standard also contains rules for the timely removal of Danger Signs when they are no longer required?
It also covers information on the specific colours to be used when manufacturing Safety Signs.

Unfortunately, the standard remains out of reach to many in the sign manufacturing industry.

This can be attributed to a number of reasons.

  • The high cost of obtaining a copy of the standard
  • Inability to navigate the standard and to fully understand its meanings.
  • The number of cross referencing to other standards.

but what it all boils down to is this, the standard exists, and for that reason creating or using a Danger sign that does not adhere to the guidelines will expose manufacturers and their clients alike to liability should the worst happen as a result of poor design, construction and installation of your Danger Sign.

Australian Safety Signs have taken all possible care whilst designing our Danger Signs. Safety Officers, Education Departments and other Government Bureaus and Sign manufacturing professionals have also taken advantage of our Professional Danger Sign Vector Art.


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