Clarion Safety Systems Answers Questions On Symbol Choices For Product Safety Labels

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Electrical engineering resource, In Compliance Magazine, features industry insight from Clarion Safety Systems on choices to make for the graphical symbols used on product safety labels

Examples of a few of the many best practice options for product safety label symbols and formats allowed by the ANSI and ISO standards

Examples of a few of the many best practice options for product safety label symbols and formats allowed by the ANSI and ISO standards

Keep in mind the benefits of symbol use on safety labels to improve both product safety and a company’s liability position in the event of an accident. The use of symbols is essential to the ISO standards and encouraged by ANSI.

In the latest issue of In Compliance Magazine, Clarion Safety Systems, a leading designer and manufacturer of safety signs and safety labels, answers questions on product safety labels and choices to make when incorporating graphical symbols.

In Compliance is a top resource for electrical engineering professionals, delivering the latest news, standards updates, technical explanations and guidance for engineers. Clarion is a regular contributor to the publication, with articles informed by the company’s nearly three decades of experience serving its customers, as well as its deep involvement in the ANSI and ISO standards committees related to safety signs and labels.

In the company’s latest article, they focus on symbol usage, an increasing focal point for product manufacturers, especially in light of recent updates to the primary international standard for product safety labels, the International Organization for Standardization’s (ISO) 3864-2 Graphical symbols – Safety colours and safety signs – Part 2: Design principles for product safety labels.

In the article, Clarion helps to answer common questions they see in the field related to style of symbols, quantity of symbols and when to use so-called “supplemental symbols” – symbols without an ISO-colored surround shape. Their expert guidance includes:

  • Keeping in mind the benefits of symbol use to improve both product safety and a company’s liability position in the event of an accident. According to Clarion, the use of symbols is essential to the ISO standards, and encouraged by ANSI, where the Z535.3 standard states that labels “with safety symbols can promote greater and more rapid communication of the safety message and therefore greater safety…”
  • The differences in categories of symbols related to the ANSI and ISO standards. The company contends that, when it comes to symbol use in line with the ISO standards, product safety engineers should be familiar with the 2016 update to ISO 3864-2, which had significant changes to label format options, including symbol use. “According to the latest version of ISO 3864-2, product safety labels must use at least one ISO-formatted safety symbol, where the symbol is placed in the colored surround shape. Symbols without the surround shape can be used, but they’re referred to as ‘supplemental symbols’ and are in addition to one or more that use the surround shape,” the article states.
  • Being aware that there’s not necessarily one correct choice to be made when it comes to the symbols you use. Clarion says, “You need to look at your options – the benefits and considerations of each – to see what fits the needs at hand in order to create the best warning possible for your product.” To help guide product safety engineers on the choices to make for their product safety label program, Clarion offers a safety label assessment service, where they review a company’s labels in line with today’s best practices.

For more information, the full article is available through In Compliance Magazine’s website. To learn more about the latest best practices for product safety labels, visit Clarion’s online Learning Center or watch its short, educational videos on “Effective Safety Symbols, Signs and Labels” and “ISO Symbols for Safety Signs and Labels.”

Clarion Safety Systems, LLC, is the leading designer and manufacturer of visual safety solutions that help customers in more than 180 industries worldwide to make their products and premises safer. Clarion offers a full range of standard and custom products including machinery safety labels, environmental and facility safety signs, pipe and valve identification markings, lockout/tagout products, and safety-grade photoluminescent egress path-marking escape systems. Founded in 1990, the company continues to play a leading role in the development and writing of international and national standards for safety signs, labels, and markings. Clarion is headquartered at 190 Old Milford Road in Milford, PA, 18337, and online at

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Erin Earley
Clarion Safety Systems
+1 570-296-5686 Ext: 228
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