How to get people to wear a facemask and adhere to social distancing_with signs

How to get people to wear a facemask and adhere to social distancing?

How to get people to wear a facemask and adhere to social distancing_with signsThe Government’s mantra of Hands, Face, Space is undoubtedly good advice but there are different levels of acceptance. With mask-wearing being one of the most argued elements, we look at how you can use signage to encourage people to comply with this and other COVID safety advice.

The UK Government’s current guidelines are to wear a face-covering in indoor spaces or where social distancing is difficult. You can read the most up to date guidelines here:

While the majority of people are complying and wearing a face covering and also social distancing to protect themselves and others from the spread of COVID there are still others that resist the government’s guidelines.

While some people do have legitimate medical reasons not to wear a facemask there are still those that just do not want to comply whether through belief or political opinion.

Currently, there are lots of psychological discussions on peoples’ behaviour, mask-wearing and COVID preventative actions. There is always a slight resistance to change until it becomes a ‘social norm’. Social norms can change rapidly if there are enough early adopters. In an online experiment published in Science, researchers found that to change social norms you just need 25% of people to be on board. From this percentage onwards the majority of people will follow suit. Unfortunately, there will be those individuals that will not adopt these new ‘norms’. While a polite spoken reminder can often provoke people into mask wearing action or safely keeping 2 metres from others, the threat of conflict can make this difficult and without additional support when challenging someone’s behaviour business owners will need other cues like signage to help get maximum compliance.


The Role of Signage and COVID Prevention

covid prevention education signsEducation

People will generally adopt certain behaviours when they completely understand why it is necessary. Different people will respond to different forms of messaging. Those that respond to more visual stimulus will respond to a simple wear a mask icon, whereas those that use more of their emotional brain will respond to positive re-enforcement with wording such as ‘Wear A Mask and Stop the Spread of COVID’.

Confidence Building

Professional clear signage will reassure the public that you are taking all the necessary precautions and their safety is your priority. People will remember the businesses that handled the pandemic efficiently and reassuringly.  Home produced signs will do little to support your branding. If budget allows, consider bespoke signage that can be printed using your logo to help build brand.

Message Consistency

Marketing firm Yankelovich, Inc. suggest, the average modern person is exposed to around 5,000 ads per day, with that amount of messaging you will need to be consistent with your signage to get your instructions through all the ‘noise’. Ideally use the same symbols and wording on all your signage, and other communications, throughout the visitors’ journey.

This is backed by the use of psychology in general advertising, one popular belief is the “Rule of 7,” which suggests consumers need to hear a message seven times before they will consider taking action.

We have a range of COVID Safety signs in different styles to ensure consistency through your business.

       Covid prevention signs

Adapting the Message to Your Audiencechild friendly covid graphics

Think about your visitors use the tone of voice consistent with your brand while still getting the message across and use language and graphics that will suit your environment. Read our Getting the COVID safety message across in a child-friendly way using posters & floor graphics case study.

For more information see our COVID related safety brochures covering COVID General safety and also our Back To Work brochure designed to help to get your business open again.

Simple New Year Safety Signs Audit

The New Year is an excellent time to carry out a safety signs audit. Ensuring your safety signs are up to date is one new year’s resolution you really should keep up.

Carrying Out A Safety Sign Audit.

You can carry out a simple safety sign audit yourselves. All business owners are obliged to carry out risk assessments to protect their staff and visitors and this is a good place to start with your signage audit. Review your latest risk assessments and where risks were identified assess whether signage could be used to alert people to any hazards that cannot be eliminated by any other changes. For example, it may not be practical to remove internal steps if the building is on several levels but highlighting the hazard with clear and appropriate markings and signage will reduce the risk. Things change over time so it’s worth reviewing your risk assessments to make sure nothing has changed, you may have purchased new equipment or refurbed an area since your last assessment.

Create a checklist to help ensure your audit is carried out thoroughly. List all the areas covered together Simple New Year Safety Signs Auditwith the hazards identified, the existing signage, are the signs visible, clean, undamaged? Are there any more safety instructions that should have signs but don’t at present? Once you have created your checklist complete with all your existing signage, this can be used year on year for the basis of your audit.

Don’t forget your external signage, walking access routes, car parks and storage areas to note any damage to signs or signs that need cleaning. For directional signage, it is often useful to enlist the help of a friend who is unfamiliar with the premises to gauge how easy it is to follow directions and highlight any changes that could make it easier. Check exterior signs are not being obscured by overgrown foliage.

Cleaning your safety signsCleaning Your Signs

A regular cleaning regime can help prolong the life of your signs and also alert you to any damaged signs that may have otherwise have been missed. Use a soft cloth and mild detergent to clean your signs. For exterior signs or in locations with high dust levels it is worth rinsing with plain luke-warm water to remove any hard or abrasive particles first to avoid scratching the sign surface. To dry use a dry, preferably lint-free cloth and blot gently to avoid streaks.

Sign Blindness

An issue that is sometimes reported is “sign blindness”. This often occurs where there are too many safety messages or instructions to convey in a small area, or where signs have been in situ for a long time. Moving the location of a sign can prompt the viewers’ mind to process this change as new information and can make them more aware. This is only possible if the new location is still in a prominent place close to the hazard or is still relevant to the instruction.

Changing signs regularly can also make the viewer more aware of new information. Using the same location but changing the information regularly will lead to the viewer to expect a change and they will be more mindful and check to see what new information is being communicated. This works particularly well with safety posters. Regularly changing your safety posters or having them on a rota, will keep the messages fresh, they will work as mini-campaigns and should work in conjunction with your overall safety plans and training.

If you find an area has multiple signs and messages the brain has difficulty in processing the information, replace cluttered multiple signs with composite signs or multi-message signs to create a tidier look that is also easier to comprehend.

We have several standard ‘off the shelf’ multi-message signs particularly covering hazard signs and construction safety signs but we can also make bespoke signs using the correct safety symbols complying to the latest legislation but conveying messages specifically for your specific situations.

If you would like any advice about your safety sign requirements please do get in touch with our Team who would be delighted to help you call 01737 762400.

A Guide to Photoluminescent Material

A Guide to photoluminescent MaterialThrough the group of companies that make up Warnstar Sign and Print, we manufacture our own photoluminescent material and produce a wide range of safety signs and safety way guidance systems for both the terrestrial and marine markets.


What is photoluminescence?

Photoluminescence is the phenomenon whereby luminescence (spontaneous emission of light by a substance not resulting from heat; or “cold light”) is induced by the absorption of visible light, UV or infrared radiation.

Often abbreviated as PL, Photoluminescence is light emission from any form of matter after the absorption of photons (electromagnetic radiation). It is one of many forms of luminescence (light emission) and is initiated by photoexcitation (i.e. photons that excite electrons to a higher energy level in an atom), hence the prefix photo-.  However, it is a non-radioactive process and requires no battery back-up and has almost unlimited charge and discharge cycles.

In a more simplified explanation, a photoluminescent material absorbs and stores photons (‘particles’ of light) from a light source. When that light source is removed, the stored energy is released as visible light and ‘glows in the dark’.

The ‘glow in the dark’ properties make it very useful for manufacturing safety products, especially signs and safety way guidance systems. In the event of light failure, photoluminescent safety signs and products are still visible for a certain length of time.

There are different grades of material depending on how bright the glow is and how long it lasts at a certain level before fading. The photoluminescence of signage products is renewable. Once the light source is re-instated the product is re-charged.


The Grades of Photoluminescent Material

The Photoluminescent Safety Products Association (PSPA) classification system is based on luminance decay data as given when tested according to ISO 17398 (also ISO 16069) illuminated with 1000 lux from Xenon D75 (Daylight) source for 5 minutes (very similar to DIN 67510 Part 1 and ASTM E 2073-10 also with this illumination and time.

A Guide to photoluminescent Material

Legislation says that terrestrial-based safety products have to be manufactured from grade/Class C photoluminescent material to be compliant with BS ISO  16069, although for marine environments Class B is the accepted norm.



Safety & Traceability of Your Photoluminescent Products?

Unlike many signage manufacturers, we don’t just print photoluminescent signs, we also manufacture A Guide to photoluminescent Materialthe material too. Our Telglow™ material is used to manufacture a wide range of safety products and SWGs and as an ISO 9001:2015 accredited company, we can produce a cost-effective product with full traceability.


The Standards & Legislation

The following standards are those most relevant for use in terrestrial applications.

BS ISO 16069:2017 Graphical Symbols – Safety Signs – Safety way guidance systems (SWGS)

A safety way guidance system coordinates a complex range of safety products in order to provide a continuous and conspicuous, unbroken route to safety that allows people to evacuate occupied areas with minimum risk. ISO 16069 indicates when and where it is appropriate to use photoluminescent materials as part of an SWGS and defines minimum performance requirements for this application.

DIN 67510 Phosphorescent Pigments and Products

This German standard is the industry norm for the measurement and assessment of photoluminescent products. DIN 67510 Part 1 defines a method where samples are exposed for 5 minutes to a Xenon light source delivering

1000lux of light energy. The light is extinguished and the afterglow measured in millicandella’s per m² (mcd/m²) at defined time intervals, until extinction is achieved at a level of 0.32 mcd/m².

DIN 67510 Part 4 defines performance levels and is used by ISO16069 to specify minimum performance requirements. When tested to DIN 67510-1 the photoluminescent must have a minimum luminance, after withdrawal of the excitation light source, of 20 mcd/² at 10 minutes, 2.8 mcd/² at 60 minutes and a minimum time to 0.32mcd/m² of 340 minutes. This information is usually annotated as follows: 20/2.8 – 340 / DIN67510-1.

If you would like advice on choosing the right photoluminescent products for you, please get in touch Tel 01737 762400.

Warning Signs: Hazard Signs: Yellow or Amber Safety Signs

Warning Signs: Hazard Signs: Yellow or Amber Safety SignsOne of the most commonly used type of safety signs are the yellow or amber safety signs which are used to warn the viewer of a particular hazard. There are strict specifications for the design and display of these signs and symbols.

According to regulations, the design of the sign must include a triangular pictogram of the hazard in black on yellow, where the yellow background takes up more than 50% of the symbol but with a thick black outline. It is the employer’s responsibility to ensure all staff understand the meaning of all safety signs displayed on the premises even if the sign’s message appears to be obvious to some.

Supplementary text is often useful in adding clarity to the safety message. The older safety sign legislation BS 5499 standard which has now been succeeded by BS EN ISO 7010: 2011 Graphical symbols – Safety colours and safety signs, uses a useful three tier risk level system. BS 5499 identified 3 levels of risk used to define the level of severity of the hazard, Danger, Warning and Caution.


DANGER (High Level of Risk) means if the danger is not avoided, it will cause death or serious injury.

WARNING (Medium Level of Risk) means if the warning is not heeded, it can cause death or serious injury.

CAUTION (Low Level of Risk) means if the precaution is not taken, it may cause minor or moderate injury.


The latest ISO BS EN 7010:2011 legislation has further simplified hazard signs to all read as ‘warning’  relying on the viewer to determine the level of risk. So while all signs are compliant there will be a move towards just ‘warning’ signs over time. At present both forms are acceptable but it is advised that BS EN ISO 7010 and BS 5499 graphical symbols and safety signs should not be mixed within the same workplace. When replacing a sign consideration should be given to this fact.

More information covering the legislation covering Hazard Safety Signs can be found here.

Sit-Up & Listen! Sit-up Challenge for Mental Health Awareness

For the last 20 Days Paul Fox, Warnstar Sign & Print’s Business Development Manager has been doing 20 sit-ups and promoting the need for listening to anyone that may be suffering from mental health issues.

Paul wanted to do something to help raise the awareness of mental health as part of the World Mental Health Day on 10th October. While he wanted to create a challenge that anyone could join in with, he also wanted it to reflect the fact that there is more to just raising awareness and you can be pro-active and make a difference to someone’s mental well-being by being someone that listens.

Paul said, “I hope people have enjoyed seeing the Sit-Up and Listen challenge, and hopefully some have even joined in but most importantly I hope that people will continue to be aware of how being there to listen can make a difference and carry this on past the 20-day challenge”.

Well done Paul and we look forward to seeing your next challenge

Safety Way Guidance Systems using Photoluminescent Material

Safety Way Guidance Systems using Photoluminescent MaterialIn the event of an emergency quick evacuation is essential and is assisted by a Safety Way Guidance System (SWGS). In the event of a power cut or low lighting levels, the use of photoluminescent materials is also extremely beneficial.

Photoluminescence is a kind of phosphorescence. It is not radioactive and requires no battery back-up.

Photoluminescent material stores energy from a light source and releases the light energy in darkness. This makes it an ideal material to use for safety signage and way guidance systems (SWGs).

The light energy needed to activate the material and the brightness it emits depends on the grade and thickness of pigment used. Read more about our Photoluminescent materials here.

Photoluminescent signs, markers and tapes can clearly mark the evacuation route, in low light or if thick smoke is obstructing any light sources. There are strict standards that all Safety Way Guidance Systems must conform to and these are set up in BS ISO 16069 which covers the design, installation and performance for both Photoluminescent and electrical Safety Way Guidance (SWGS).

SWGS are designed so they are understood by all, regardless of language or culture. In the event of an emergency, they guide occupants within the premises safely out of the building to a designated assembly or refuge point.

In addition to BS ISO 16069, the symbols & sign designs used must also comply with the standards BS EN 7010 and BS ISO 3864 parts 1-4.

See details of our Safety Way Guidance System Products below

Evacuation Route Signs

Safety Way Guidance Products

Romford Film Festival

Our Sister Company Warnstar Sign & Print Sponsors of this year’s Romford Film Festival

We are excited and proud that our sister company, Warnstar Sign & Print, are one of the sponsors of this year’s Romford Film Festival, running from the 13th – 19th August. You can find out more about the event here: #FilmFestival #Romford

If you would like to find out more about how Warnstar Sign & Print can help with printed promotional items for your event please get in touch.

Romford Film Festival

‘First Aid at a glance’ guide

Save a life with our new easy-flip First Aid guide – £18.50  SALE PRICE £12.99

In an active environment, being able to recognise the more common accident and health problems will allow the appropriate action to be taken. To be able to do this quickly can save lives and reduce the stress of the victim.

first aid collage


– A4 size, easy-flip First Aid guide
– Fully illustrated with easy to follow bullet point instructions
– Logical format to encourage a calm approach
– 15 Informative tabs
– Useful Contact Section for priority telephone numbers
– Handy white board on reverse side
– Supplied with dry wipe pen and clip

Where to use it

The booklet should be hung in all hazardous areas and conspicuous common areas such the reception of staff rest areas.first-aid-areas

Click here to buy yours today, only £18.50  SALE PRICE £12.99

End of Year Stock Take 2017

We will be undertaking our annual end of year stock take commencing Wednesday 1st February to Friday 3rd February.

Unfortunately this may cause a delay in our ability to send out orders during this period. Last despatch date for completed orders will be 31st January. Orders placed after this date will be accepted and despatched week commencing 6th February.

We apologise for any inconvenience this may cause, for further information please call 01737 762400, or email  [email protected]

Meet Dominic Robinson

Dominic Robinson will be taking over the day to day running of Warnstar, having gained valuable experience and product knowledge within Maritime Progress Ltd he will now move over to support our associate company Signs For Safety.

For more information on our products and services please don’t hesitate to contact Dominic on [email protected]

UK Public Holidays information 2016

We always want to provide you with the best possible service.  With this in mind, please be aware of UK public holidays when our offices will be closed, so order ahead to avoid delays.

Also please note our end of year stock take, takes place on the 27th January 2016 and will affect dispatch of orders over a 2 day period.


Hand Wash Technique Poster

Prevent the spread of unwanted germs

This simple, clear instruction poster is a welcome addition to kitchens, bathrooms and toilet facilities and will help prevent the spread of unwanted germs.

Help reduce sickness on cruise ships

The Norovirus is not an illness only associated with ships, it is perhaps more widespread on land (restaurants, hotels, dormitories etc.,) where it can spread swiftly wherever there are many people in small areas.  This poster acts as an aide-memorie to hygiene and helps protect people.

Material options
– A4 size
– White/clear self adhesive vinyl (WV) £5.00 each
– Rigid plastic mounted (WR) £10.00 each
– Photoluminescent rigid plastic £12.50 each

Click here to buy yours, today

Brand New Signs For Safety Brochure

We would like to announce the release of our brand new Signs for Safety brochure.

Now available in a A5 size format, the new Signs for Safety brochure will be an invaluable guide for the Responsible Person(s) in your organisation.

To request a free copy click here

Signs for Safety team